Thursday, August 20, 2009

A Challenge! Where Would You Go?

I've finally gotten some long overdue tasks done and I'm determined to keep the "get it done" attitude going. This morning, I used bribery with myself. I was looking at the onscreen preview guide and saw that some good movies were coming on. I decided I could watch a movie or two as long as I was doing something productive while I watched.

One of the movies was Somewhere In Time. The preview guide called it "earnest and hokey". I've seen it dozens of times and I've never found it to be hokey. I think it's a wonderful story with gorgeous scenery. I think I like it so much because I like the idea of time travel. I don't believe it's possible, but I love the notion of it.

Time travel is a common theme among some of my favorite movies and television shows. Besides Somewhere In Time, I love the movies Frequency, A Christmas Carol, Back To The Future, The Butterfly Effect, Groundhog Day (more stuck in time than time travel), The Lake House, The Langoliers, Meet The Robinsons, Time After Time, Twelve Monkeys, and Peggy Sue Got Married. Quantum Leap is one of my favorite television shows, though it's not on anymore. And I can't possibly forget the Twilight Zone, especially the episode A Stop At Willoughby! I haven't seen the new movie The Time Travelers Wife, but I certainly plan to. I'm debating whether to read the book first.

If some day, time travel were possible, I wonder where, or should I say when, in time I would like to go. This sounds like a challenge! Here are the rules: You will stay in the time and place you choose for 24 hours, and you can interact with anyone, but you may not alter history in any way (meaning you can't prevent a death, stop an event from happening or introduce items/ideas not available in that time). Creativity is highly encouraged! If you accept this challenge but don't want to post it to your own blog, feel free to share your time travel story in my comment section.

So where and when would I go? I thought about this a lot. I wanted to choose something a little unexpected. I wanted to go somewhere outside of my lifetime, but in a time period that I know a little about so I wouldn't be entirely surprised by my surroundings. I wanted to see people or a place that would be meaningful to me in some way. I finally decided that I would like to go back 141 years from today (100 years before I was born) to the very place I sit to create my blog every day.


The date would be August 20, 1868 in a small town (possibly before it had a name) in Michigan. The exact location, I believe, would be a farmer's field. This house was built in the early 1860's but it was moved at some point, so I'll have to wander around until I find it. I expect that the town itself will have a small dirt road running through it with a few businesses on either side. I think I may find a blacksmith, a general store and maybe a bar or saloon. Train tracks run through our small town in the present, so I wonder if I might find a train station. I'm fairly certain there will be a school and probably a church or two.

I expect to see men dressed in work clothes because this is a farming community, and the women to be wearing dresses. Fancy clothes, I believe, would be saved for church on Sunday and special events like weddings and funerals. I think it will be common to see people riding through town on horses or in buggies and wagons pulled by horses.

Talk of the civil war is probably still common. It's been over for three years and I'm certain it's still fresh in the minds of those who served and those who waited and worried about them. Andrew Johnson is the president, though he's at the end of his term. Ulysses S. Grant will take his place in eight months.

Mark Twain hasn't written Tom Sawyer yet, but a wonderful new book called Little Women is available as is the new Jules Verne novel In Search of the Castaways. Laura Ingalls Wilder hasn't even dreamed of the books she will someday write as she's only 18 months old. Trade cards, an early form of baseball cards, are becoming popular. If I could bring one back to 2009, I might be able to sell it for $20,000 or better in like new condition. For those who enjoy sheet music, In The Sweet By And By and Ten Little Injuns are new choices.

I hope to spend my day visiting with the family that lived in my house at that time. I also hope to see how the community I now call home got it's start. I expect to be impressed by the tenacity and ingenuity of the people who lived their lives with so much less, and in some ways, so much more than we have today. I expect to be humbled by them and I expect leaving to be a bittersweet experience.


Now it's your turn.


Kathy said...

Nice post! I will try to get Seashell involved in this!

5thsister said...

You definitely need to write that book! Your gift for prose is wonderful! Another thought provoking post from Su!

ChristineM said...

I love every movie you mentioned! I've always been fascinated with history, so I've always wondered what it would be like to go back in time...but strangely, I've never wanted to go FORWARD!

I can see I won't get any work done today...I'll be mulling this one over! ;)

Amy said...

This is fantastic! I love your choice! I really like how you covered literature, the presidency, public sentiment at the time. I am going to take soem time and think about this although I already know where I'm going!

Be back later on!

PurpleHoodieChick said...

When you came back you would have to tell me if you saw any of your ghost!! Especially the boy in the blue shirt.

Lissaloo said...

What a fun post, I am going to have to check out that movie, it sounds like a good one. The past has always held more fascination for me than the future, give me little house on the prairie over sci-fi any day :)

Amy said...

I said I'd be back! I loved this idea and had such fun with it. I guess I got a little carried away since my post is almost a page long! Oh well, I love it!
I hope you check it out when you have the time!

Thank you for such a fun idea!