1980s Time Capsule

Our heating system gave out last spring in a spectacular burst of burning oil and possible carbon monoxide poisoning. It was dreadful.

We survived and toughed it out for the last half of a Boston winter with only one furnace, which meant heating the first floor with nothing more than electric radiators and blankets. It sucked, but it wasn't the Worst Thing Ever. You can adjust to anything in life. We just dressed a bit more cozily and told guests to dress warm ("no, really, we mean warm!") when they came to visit.

As soon as the ground thawed in May we got to work on switching from oil to gas. Well, more specifically, we got the gas company to work connecting our house to the gas line.

That took a lot of digging and not surprisingly, the workers unearthed a little surprise:


 When I first saw the beer bottle and bag of chips on our front lawn I was ready to call the gas company and complain about them drinking on the job -- and worse, leaving a mess for me to clean up. That was certainly not in our agreement.

But something about the bottle looked odd. So before throwing the items in the recycling bin I took a closer look and found this:


The bag of chips and bottle of Bud are of 1985 vintage, which coincidentally is the same year my house was built. It seems that the original builder left a little time capsule for us!

(Or, more likely, it seems that the original builder drank beer and ate chips and was too lazy to find a garbage can. Whatever. I prefer to think it was left intentionally. Don't ask me what his message about the 80s was.)

When I was a little girl I fell in love with the idea of time capsules and I'm pretty sure I left a few things hidden in the courtyard of the apartment building where I grew up. What I would give to be able to go back and dig up that old shoe box! I don't even remember what's in it, but could you imagine? I'm guessing there's probably a Barbie and a friendship bracelet. Knowing me, I probably left a little letter as well. Unfortunately, that box is in Santo Domingo and I don't think we'll be heading back anytime soon. Bummer.