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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Once in a Blue Moon (01/06/11)

TITLE: Mementos
By Michael Joshua


His reminiscing was interrupted when his 6 year old grandson bounded into the room.

Shoving his dirty hand into the old wooden box, Kody pulled out a coin. "Grandpa, why are you saving this dime?"

"Well, Kody, that's a mercury dime. They don't make them anymore. See the wings next to his head? He is the Roman God – the messenger god – the god of commerce and profit, so they say. Considering that the United States prints, "In God We Trust" on its money, it has always seemed a bit odd that we had a Roman god on a coin," Grandpa replied.

Kody didn't even look up as he rubbed it on his shirt, "Uh-huh, can I have it?"

"Obviously, you're not listening. It's rare – no, you can't have it."

Kody reached into the box and pulled out a folded one-dollar bill. "Can I have this, grandpa?"

"No, Kody. This is a scarce one-dollar bill – see what it says here? Silver Certificate."

"What about this, grandpa. Can I have this?" as he held up a 'Reagan for President' button.

"Kody, don't you have anything to do besides go through my box of mementos?"

"Grandpa, this old stuff is cool. How about this pin? See, it fits on my shirt."

"Kody, those are the wings I earned when I flew a fighter plane in Korea. No, you can't have them." With his gnarled fingers, he struggled to remove the pin from Kody's shirt. "See that dent? A bullet that hit my plane came through the side and glanced off my wings. One-of-a-kind. Maybe when I die…"

"Die? How long will that be grandpa?"

"Kody, I don't know – I think I hear grandma calling you."

"Grandma went to the store. How about this, can I have this?" as he placed it crossways on his head.

"That's my military beret, there aren't many of these around, they're few and far between. Gotta hang on to that, Kody."

"Wow, grandpa. An old baseball card. Who was Pete Rose?"

"He was an amazing player back in the day. This is his rookie card, you seldom see one of these anymore. It would be worth more if he hadn't been caught cheating, money does strange things to people. But it's worth a couple hundred dollars anyways."

"A coupla hundred dollars? Man, I could sell it and buy a new game for my Wii. Can I have it grandpa?"

Grandpa carefully lifted the card from Kody's fingers and placed it back in the box.

"Hey, Kody, what's that noise? I think it's the garage door. Grandma must be back. Go see if you can help her."

With his hand searching around inside the box, Kody didn't even look up. "It's the neighbor, I can tell. Grandpa, how did you meet grandma?"

"Oh, now that's a great story. Your grandma, well, she's not rare or scarce like the stuff in my box. She's a 'once in a blue moon' kinda find."

"I met her…"

"Grandma's home." Grandpa looked up to see the backside of Kody's jacket flying through the doorway.

"Once in a blue moon, yup, that's her," he whispered as he placed the box of mementos back on the closet shelf.

"I remember running to meet her, too, I surely do." He smiled as he closed the closet and walked toward the kitchen.

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This article has been read 306 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Karen Pourbabaee 01/14/11
a favorite of mine this week...simple, sweet & such a realistic depiction of the grandson-grandfather interaction I could see it playing out in front of me.
Sharon Laughter01/14/11
Several stars for several reasons! Super technique for revealing a character's history- cute characters too! I felt like I was sitting at the foot of grandpas recliner.
Brenda Rice 01/15/11
You captured the emotions of the grandpa and the actions of the grandson, while revealing just the right amount of detail. Well done.
Noel Mitaxa 01/17/11
A sales force of six-year-olds could conquer the world through their persistence.
I love how you havee captured the excitement, innocence and awareness of the child, and linked them with the patience affection of the grandfather. So much life in this interaction.
Excellent work.