When I was in elementary school a mystery lay under our feet. I forgot who first told me but they must have heard it from an older kid. Grenades, guns and rockets – they and other weapons were stored in tunnels that ran under the asphalt banks at the edges of the school and probably elsewhere. Access was off bounds. It was somewhere in the janitor’s quarters. We were certain of this.
This was the Cold War era so we were sure the weapons were a precaution if the Russians were to strike. Weapons under our feet and in schools across America. I seem to think we once tried to get down there but to no avail and the dreams of sleuthing and mystery faded with the years and the asphalt banks became better for running up and down and then for skateboarding and then sitting on and chatting about what to do after school. Real stuff, not imaginary.
Well, my six-year-old daughter came home from school the other day with her imagination flying. At school, she told me, three dead bodies were buried up on the roof. It was very dangerous and scary, she told me, shuddering at the thought. Her and two friends are going to find them. They have to sneak up the stairs to get there, right under the noses of the teachers. They may get caught. They’re going to go and take a photo of the three dead bodies and take it to the police so they can solve the murder.
The joy of the imagination, I think as I listen to the mystery and the adventure of the three sleuths. At least, I hope it’s all fiction.