The Estate Sale Vase

Mandee, TN, USA
August 2018

My aunt Lily was an avid flea market, garage sale, and estate sale shopper and she has come across some strange objects but this vase tops them all.

It was found in a box she purchased and is admittedly not very attractive. It's a crudely handmade vase, a dull gray color, about 8 inches high and it has a small handle on each side. You can see on the bottom of it that it still has the circular grooves from a pottery wheel.

She placed it on a bookcase along with several other vases and almost immediately my uncle demanded it be moved. When he sat at his computer desk his back was squarely facing that vase and he said it made him extremely uncomfortable.

The vase's next home was my other aunt's house but it didn't live there long either because my young cousin was terrified of it (he was too young to explain why).

Next was my mother's turn to have it and my dad right away started being awakened every night by thumping noises, sometimes so loud it rattled the dishes in the china cabinet but my mom never woke up.

My sister flatly refused to take it so I took it home with me.

I have a V-shaped shelf in my living room, the kind that fits into a corner. It's in the alcove beside the front door and my dog will not get within 5 feet of that vase. When he has to go outside, he heads to any other door but that one.

One of his toys bounced over there once and I watched to see what he would do. He crept very slowly sideways, never taking his eyes off that vase. He seized his toy in his mouth and scooted out of the room with his tail tucked under him.

Well, my aunt and I decided ok, what is up with this vase, so we literally scoured the Internet searching for anything and everything.

Turns out that the vase is an urn for human ashes! Of course it's empty but when we looked closer there were also clear grooves just inside the mouth of the vase where a cork of some kind had been there.

We have no clue how it came to be empty and in an estate sale box full of other odds and ends but I still have it in the same place I first put it.

Unfortunately, the dog is also still scared of that corner but he has the rest of the house because I have no intention of getting rid of it. It doesn't frighten me a bit and I'm still dying of curiosity about its background.

Mandee, TN, USA
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