One day I was outside playing with my dog. I got so tired that I fell down. The next thing I knew I was next to a store, where my house was supposed to be.
Then I realized I was back in time! We've been studying Worcester history in our class, and I saw pictures of Maxham's store, which used to be where my house is now.
Oh, no! Then I heard growling – it was a bear! "The soda drinking bear!" I yelled. I had heard about that bear from my interview with Madelyn Maxham Kimball, whose grandmother ran the store. She said when she was about five, her Uncle Earl brought back a cub bear from Canada. They called him Cree, for the Indian tribe from Canada. She said he was a star attraction, and he loved soda! I looked at him for a few minutes, and then I began to worry.
I quickly covered my mouth. What if no one knows me? What if I was not liked? What if I was laughed at? What if I couldn't be seen?! Those thoughts raced through my mind.
"Well, here goes nothing," I said.
I walked over to enter the store. "Mrs. Maxham?" I called out.
"Hello, there. How can I help you?" Mrs. Maxham asked.
"I'm lost . . . well, sort of," I said.
"Where do you need to be?" she asked.
"Back to 2005," I mumbled.
"What?" she asked.
"Here," I said.
Soon I was looking around . . . bread $0.10, soda $0.05 a bottle, penny candy, sugar $0.25 for a 5 pound bag, candy bars $0.05, gas $0.21 and a lot more. "This is really cheap!" I said.
Then a girl came up to me and said, "No, it's not. These prices are the same as any store."
I looked at her and asked, "What's your name?"
"Madelyn, what's yours?"
"Christa, and what's it to you?" I growled. I guess I was feeling pretty nervous.
"What's the matter?" she asked. I just huffed and went outside. I kept looking around, amazed at all I was seeing. I saw a notice saying there would be a stenciling class later in the day. I remembered that Mary Maxham did stenciling and other crafts.
A little later, an old lady came to the store after it had closed, but Mrs. Maxham told Madelyn to wait on her. She was looking at the cranberries and tried to whistle, but all she did was pucker her lips and make a blowing noise. Then she complained, "I can get these cranberries two cents cheaper in Montpelier."
"Then that's the place to buy them," Madelyn said.
I started to laugh. "What are you doing here? Are you spying on me or something?" she asked in a surprised voice.
"No, I just thought it was funny," I laughed.
"I know your name is Christa, but I don't know where you live," said Madelyn.
"Well, it's kind of complicated," I answered. "I actually live here, but not now."
"What?" Madelyn asked in a confused voice.
"I think I've traveled back in time, from the year 2005."
"Wow! Maybe Gram can help you." She led me to the back of the store, where Mary Maxham was working at her loom. "Gram, Christa has a problem."
Mary looked at me and said," I think know why you're here and where you're from – 2005, right?"
"How do you know?" I asked her.
"You live where my store was, remember?" she said. We just stared at each other..
"I traveled back in time when I was a child, too. Did you lie down outside at exactly 12 noon?"
"Yes, ma'am. How did you know?"
"That's the magic place and time. Now you're going to have to wait till noon tomorrow to return. You can spend the night with us, until then," she said.
"Thanks," I responded.
As you can see, I made it back to 2005. I might go back again another weekend. For now, I want to thank Jim and Audrey Richardson, and Madelyn Maxham Kimball for helping me learn about the history of where I live, so I could know I had traveled back in time!
Thanks to the Maxham family and the Worcester Historical Society for the photographs of Mary Maxham and her store and home.