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The Snow Globe

Ms. Gomez sat back in her chair and looked over the roll of her second-grade class.

“Braden, you have something for show and tell today?” she asked.

He nodded, pulled something from his backpack, and stood at the front of the room.

“This is a snow globe,” he said.

The class oohed and awed.

“My grandpa made it.”

“Who wishes we could trade places with the people in that snow globe for the day?” Ms. Gomez said to polite laughter.

Mom loved the snow, Ms. Gomez thought to herself, briefly looking at the framed picture of her and her mom on her desk. I should not have lugged her all the way here to Arizona.

As Braden finished, he walked the snow globe around the classroom for all to see.

“Can I take a look?” Ms. Gomez asked.

“Of course,” he said, placing it on her desk. “Keep it here for a while. There’s a lot to take in.”

“Thank you, Braden,” Ms. Gomez said. “Let’s see, Becky, why don’t you go next.”

While show and tell proceeded, Ms. Gomez looked over the snow globe carefully. The amount of detail was remarkable.

In the center of the snow globe was a snowy scene of a mid-sized commercial building, surrounded by intricate pathways, streetlights, and benches.

As she glanced between the presenting student, the snow globe, and the picture of her mom on her desk, something dawned on her. The building in the snow globe was the hospital her mom was in.

It struck her as nothing more than an odd coincidence at first—perhaps Braden’s grandma was in the hospital for a long time and his grandpa created the snow globe as a memorial or something.

Before Ms. Gomez could call Braden over, the bell for afternoon recess rung. The kids, including Braden, burst out in cheers and filtered out the door.

“Oh well,” she said to herself and leaned back, taking a long sip of coffee. She picked the snow globe up, stared at it carefully, then gave it a good shake. The snow engulfed the scene, swirling the building entirely.

She looked over her desk calendar momentarily then glanced at the snow globe again.

The scene had changed.

This time, in the center of the globe was a staircase stretched five levels high. Ms. Gomez recognized it as the staircase of her mother’s hospital.

At the top of the staircase was a woman in a hospital gown—a spitting image of her mother. She was standing on top of the railing, looking down at the ground, five levels below.

“What the hell,” Ms. Gomez whispered, clutching the snow globe.

Her phone rang. It was Gila Valley Medical Center.

“No, no, no,” she said and shook the snow globe again while the phone rang.

Before the snow settled, one of her students popped her head in the door. “Ms. Gomez, you’ll never believe it, it’s snowing! In Arizona!”

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