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Watch Without Hands

While cleaning out her father's house after his death, Samantha discovered his pocket watch and chain in a velvet box wedged in the back of the old bureau drawer. The watch no longer had hands, but was made of 18-karat gold and would be worth something to her mother if the case were melted down. But her mother was in a nursing home, having had a stroke that left her frail and unable to walk. On Samantha's next visit, her mother was excited to see the watch. She remembered it as the one she'd bought her husband fifty years before - a wedding gift. Her mother reached out and snatched the watch, quickly anchoring the chain to a buttonhole in her cardigan.

"Mother," Samantha said. "The watch has no hands."

"That's okay," she said. "Each hour in this nursing home is the same as every other one."

Story by:

Toby Tucker Hecht

6 August 2016