Uncle Ed told us he’d lost his hand wrestling a crocodile for a ruby.
He’d tracked the beast from the bay, up river, and finally found it asleep in a creek hardly wider than its shoulders. They’d battled for days. Until Uncle Ed managed to get it in a headlock.
“Sure, I lost a hand. But it was worth it. I needed that ruby to marry your aunt.”
One time, after he told us the story, he pushed the beer cans away, leaned his head down on the table and started to cry. We didn’t see him much after that.