Bag Girl Goes: 1930s


October 31st, 1931

Jasmine and I went into town around nine o’clock this morning. We planned to go see a movie at eleven thirty and I called for a taxi a couple hours early because I was afraid that the taxi company would be busy today. Fortunately, there was not a wait and the taxi arrived shortly and brought us to the cinema in downtown Salem, where Jasmine bought tickets for the eleven thirty showing of Dracula. Then we went to a nearby coffee shop for breakfast.

It was a bit chilly in the shade today but other than that it was a crisp and lovely autumn day. Jasmine put on her Halloween costume early, since today is Halloween. She went as a cowboy and I drew sideburns and a goatee on her face using an eyebrow pencil. I was stuck with my frumpy old feed sack calico dress and my old coat which as huge tares in it; I must talk to mother about getting fabric to patch it up. Times have been hard for both mine and Jasmine’s families but despite this, I was too soft hearted not to give change to the beggars and hobos were passed.

When eleven thirty rolled around, we returned to the cinema. Jasmine and I had decided that she would buy the tickets for the movie and I would pay for the popcorn but I told her that she would have to pay for her own snacks because I was running low on my money for the week and needed what I had left for lunch and the taxi. Mother would be angry with me if I asked for more money this week. Luckily Jasmine was not upset with me and I promised that I would buy lunch.

I’ve heard that Dracula is so frightening that the ushers at the movie theaters showing it have to hand out smelling salts to people as they go in; It was every bit as terrifying as I had hoped. Jasmine was so scared that she burst into tears but I remained brave and unaffected. After the movie, we went to a favorite deli of ours for lunch, I treated like I promised, and then we ran some errands. Jasmine insisted on stopping into a store where the boy she is sweet on works, so she can make goo goo eyes at him, but alas for her, he was not there.


We finished up with our errands around four in the evening and took a taxi home. Back at home, I helped Jasmine freshen up her eyebrow pencil beard and sideburns and put on my own Halloween costume. I wore my good silk dress with a pair of silver shoes and a paste jewel headband and called myself Cinderella. Our plans for the evening were to go to a nearby speakeasy, where Jasmine and I listened to live music and tried to make awkward small talk with strangers we did not really want to talk to and who did not really want to talk to us. Only two things made going there worthwhile.


The first was that there was a palm reader who looked over the lines and bumps on my hands. My palms are square shaped, which means that I am realistic and practical. The bumps on my palms show that I am passionate and imaginative. I have a long thumb, which means I stubborn.

The lengths of my fingers show that I want to live a nontraditional but have a desire to make money and that I had a temper as a child which I learned to control. My head line and life line are close together which means that I’m smart and independent. The life line shows that I will live a long and healthy life which some sort of interruption in middle age. The love line shows that two years from now, when I’m twenty-three, I will have the confidence to attract the right person; I will get married at age twenty-four. I will have two marriages and child with each husband.

The most interesting part was when the palm reader told my past lives by looking at the wrinkles on my wrist. My first past life was as a celebrate female writer in renaissance France, the second was as a male revolutionary who wrote fiery political pamphlets during the American Revolution.

Later on the evening, there was a seance in a small back room of the speakeasy, where a planchet and cards with letters on them were set up on a table. The small back room was dark except for several candles. This is the first seance I’ve ever been to and I did not know what to expect. The first two spirits we tried to contact were those of Mary Sibley and Rebecca Nurse, two people involved with the Salem Witch Trials. We could not get ahold of Mary Sibley but Rebecca Nurse came to speak with us. We asked her there she was and she said heaven. One of us at the table said that she was descendent of the Putnam family, who accused Nurse of witchcraft, and asked her for forgiveness, which was granted. Then we tried to contact Salem’s favorite son, Nathaniel Hawthorne, The letters the planchet landed on spelled out “he is here” but Hawthorne would not speak with us.

Jasmine and I tried to contact our grandfathers. I could not get ahold of mine but Jasmine’s told her that he was proud of her and her father and that he was grateful they could speak. We made sure to say goodbye to the spirits before they left, as we were supposed to do.

All of that communing with dead has made me tired and I have to get up early tomorrow. May we all sleep well and not be disturbed by vampires or restless spirits.




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