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This is Megan, and she would like to tell you about her journey into the past.
A short time ago Megan’s family moved into a new house. Well, it wasn't exactly new, but it was very spacious. It might've looked like an old shack with spiderwebs and ghosts in the attic but she and her parents had a plan for how to make it look great both inside and out. Among all their other ideas, they decided to turn their backyard into a beautiful garden.
While her parents were working on the inside of the house, Megan started the gardening project by doing the most important thing - creating a garden bed. She was so happy to be out there working, but after digging only a few feet into the ground her shovel suddenly hit something hard. Her heart started beating faster with anticipation. What if she’d just found a skull?
It did actually turn out to be a metal case, but there was no gold in it. Just an old watch with a near disintegrated white leather strap and Mickey Mouse on the watch-face, a round tin can with celluloid film inside, and a note.
Being careful not to harm the film, she set it aside and opened the note. It was written by someone named Darla. She wished whoever found this treasure all the best, and hoped that when it was found the world would still be a prosperous place, and people would have already figured out how to fly to the stars. She also enclosed a gift - her favorite wrist-watch. The note was dated 1958.
The note didn’t say what was on the film, so Megan was very eager to find out. She couldn't stop thinking about it, right up to the moment when she finally found a film projector available to buy online. She also spent some time studying how to play an old movie without ruining the film. This whole experience turned out to be an interesting adventure.
And so the moment finally came when Megan was able to watch the three-minute movie, which consisted of just a few scenes. She saw her new house when it was a newly-built cottage. There was a view of the street, where she recognized a few of the then much younger trees, fully grown by now. To her surprise the area looked like it hadn’t really changed much over the past 60 years. The cars, however, were totally different. The last shot was of a pretty girl smiling and waving at the camera, with their house in the background. Megan assumed it was Darla… And she wanted to know more about her. She must be over 70 years old by now, she thought.
The first thing she did was to ask all their neighbors. Unfortunately, none of them had lived there 60 years ago, so they knew nothing about Darla.
Then Megan went to the city archives. She didn’t learn much, but she did find a record about the family that lived at their address in 1958. The last name on there was at least a starting point!
Megan kept investigating and finally came across a phone number. When she called, a grown-up male voice answered the phone. She told him that she currently lived at the house where his family used to live, and asked him if he knew a Darla. “That's my grandma but she's losing her memory and for the last few years she's lived in a nursing home.”
The conversation made her feel really sad. In the film she had seen a young girl, smiling and full of life and energy, and it felt strange to realize that now she had grown old and even lost her memory. She decided to visit her anyway.
She went to the nursing home where Darla lived, and told the staff there who she was and what she had found. They didn’t object to her meeting Darla and showing her the things she had left in the box half a century ago. A nurse showed her the way to Darla’s room.
The door opened and Megan saw a nice old lady in her seventies, wrapped up in a warm checkered plaid blanket. She was confused when she saw her, for some reason deciding that she was her great-granddaughter. Megan neither contradicted nor confirmed her thoughts. She just sat close to her and showed her the case that she had dug out of the garden with all the things inside. Darla thoughtfully twirled her old wrist watch in her hands while Megan played her the video from the old celluloid that she had shot on her smartphone's camera.
Believe it or not, the old lady remembered recording it! She didn’t realize who Megan was, but she recalled with confidence her idea to leave a “time capsule” for people from the future. Megan listened to her memories about that day in particular and about life in general - what things were like 60 years before.
It was certainly an interesting experience to see how people perceived the future over half a century ago!
Music by Epidemic Sound: www.epidemicsound.com
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