A Story That Was Locked Up Was A Boney Surprise

What stories do you have locked inside because you haven't taken a look back?

Many of my stories come from letting my mind wander down the memory trail. When something turns up that I want to share with my family I keep it. Like this one for instance.

A few years back Jim and I took our grandson to visit the Army Medical Museum which then was housed on the campus of Walter Reed Hospital. Among the medical equipment and bones I found a story I had forgotten.

A Bit About Jim 

Jim and I met at Johns Hopkins Hospital. He was a second year student and I was a new nursing student.
Jim was very intense about his studies. Often our dates became "study" dates and we spent hours in a hospital library with Jim's nose in his books and me sometimes dozing.

Jim often helped me tackle difficult assignments. Learning all the bones of the skull was quite a challenge.
One night when Jim came to pick me up at Hampton House (the nurses residence) he was carrying a round package wrapped in newspaper. He offered it to me. "I think this will help you learn those bones." I took it.

I felt the round hardness of a skull in my hands. Jim had borrowed it for me. I swallowed hard. "Thank you." I took it to my room and left it while we went out.

When I returned later, after we had coffee,  I unwrapped the skull and stared at it. The sightless eye cavities above the gaping toothy mouth stared back. I set it on my desk and got into the bed with a book. Shortly, I turned out the light. I could still see the skull on the desk because of light from a streetlight outside. I turned away but I could not relax. I knew that skull was looking at me.

Finally I got up, picked up the skull and moved it to the closet. I set it on the floor and closed the door. I turned back toward my bed. Then hesitated, and - all right, all right - I did feel kind of stupid as I turned the key and locked the closet door.

That's where the skull stayed until I returned it to Jim.


Still the Lucky Few said...

A very sweet story. I know from previous articles that you and Jim had a wonderful lige together.

Still the Lucky Few said...

Ooops! I meant to type 'life', not 'lige'!