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  • In my tween years, on a trip to Florida I believe, I began collecting business cards. I don't know why. I probably like the idea of assuming a different identity.

    But most of all I always had an urge to collect things. If I could I would have massive collections of stuff.

    I'm sure get that from my grandmother. Eola was a huge collector. She collected spoons, buttons, rocks, pens, shells, sand, stamps and napkins.

    So when she found out I was collecting business cards she was exited to help me out. She began stockpiling cards for me and periodically would send me a stack.

    I outgrew my business card collecting phase in about one year.

    But over the next 20 odd years I would continue to get a stack of business card from grandma ever so often.

    The cards she would send me would echo her life journey. Increasingly the bundles of cards would include more and more doctors and health care professionals. It happens.

    The latest stack she gave me was just a few weeks ago. Delivered by my parents after a visit with her and grandpa. A small stack, she wasn't getting around much these days, rubber banded together with a note. "For Gerik. from Grandma"

    I placed it on a shelf and didn't think much of them. Kind of forgot about the cards until today.

    You see I was packing for a trip, and I needed a rubber band. I couldn't find one anywhere in the house. Then I saw that bundle of cards and the rubber band. And the note.

    That note with her handwriting on it. The last thing she ever wrote to me.

    She'd want me to use this rubber band, I thought to myself. So I took it off the cards. And then I continued to pack my somber black suit. I would soon be leaving to say a last goodbye to her.
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