“Both Quinn and I were aware of the impending threat to the Ambridge Reservoir, which provided drinking water for 30,000 people living in Beaver County. Even though I was determined to prevent what was about to occur, I couldn’t shake the feeling that stopping it would be nearly impossible.”

QUINN: “OK, Boss, I know you are clever, but how do you expect to stop the future? That’s a hefty task! It seems impossible, and you know it!”

ME: “Great Scott, I was just thinking, if Doc Brown can zip ‘Back to the Future’ in his DeLorean and tweak things for the better, why can’t we do a little tinkering ourselves traveling in time with our Wish balloon?”

QUINN: “Because, Wish doesn’t grant wishes; it just takes us to places that have already happened. So, of course, we can hop back to the past or head back to the present, but we can’t mess with history to change the future. You know the drill! So, where to next? What’s the plan?”

ME: “I don’t have one yet. Let me give it some thought.”

QUINN: “Alright, but don’t take too long. I’m itching to get back to my investigations. You know me, I have a whole lot of ground to cover – in more ways than one, but I’ll give you a couple minutes to THINK!”

QUINN: “So, the question was … “What’s the Plan?” And, your answer is …

ME: “This was a tough question! So, picture this: before you joined the ride, my trusty red-engine plane, Electra, and I time-traveled with our passengers to all sorts of destinations. But now, after mulling it over, I realize I need to explain what first sparked my passion for the environment and share some secrets I’ve been keeping for many years.”

Together, Quinn and I called out to our scattered gang, still having fun in and out of the river. Even though we weren’t playing hide-and-seek, we teamed up, and at the top of our lungs, hands cupped around our mouths, megaphone style, we shouted, “olly olly oxen free!” After all the passengers returned to the beach, we hiked up the hillside to Wish, climbed in, got settled, and awaited my directive for the next launch.

WISH: “Glad to see you again. I was beginning to feel depleted up here, all by myself, awaiting your return to enable me to rise and shine!” Where are we headed?”

ME: “My decision is … we are leaving 2018 and traveling back to December of 2007.” 

WISH: “Your wish is my command. Hold on, and away we … WOOSH!”

In less than a nanosecond, Wish lands on a snow-covered lawn directly in front of my Presto Chango home. We are not prepared for the winter weather, having just come from the warmth of the summer sun in Beaver County, eleven years earlier. Climbing out of Wish is made more difficult by a chilly wind blowing us about. Our clothes offer little protection against the cold, so we huddle together tightly, seeking warmth. With each step towards my home across the street, the crunch of our sandaled feet in the snow heightens the urgency to get indoors. Though the journey across the street is short, it feels like an eternity until we reach the front door.

With a shove, the unlocked door swings open, allowing us to escape the cold. Hurriedly, we find a corner in the living room to dry off. I rush into the bedroom to retrieve warm sweaters and socks for myself and my still-shivering passengers, then join them in the corner to watch events unfold. The phone is ringing. I listen as my younger self answers … “Hello.”

NEIGHBOR: “Hi Dylan, Ralph here. Wanted to give you a heads up, Marcellus Shale is moving into Presto.”

Stay tuned to learn more …