Frank knew that he should be concerned about survival, but his curiosity was getting in the way. What was an old biplane doing at the bottom of a canyon? The tail was buried, but the door was exposed. Frank couldn’t see inside. The windshield was caked with mud. He yanked at the door, expecting resistance, but it opened like it was brand new. It smelled like death, the way a tomb might smell after 50 years. A skeleton hunched over the dashboard, looking as if it was taking a nap.
“Sorry friend,” Frank said. He unbuckled it and the skeleton popped out like it was spring-loaded. Frank jumped and then laughed. He didn’t know what he was looking for and the spirit of finding something he couldn’t buy made him even more excited. He noticed a door leading into the tail and he yanked at it, popping it open. There was nothing there but sandbags and Frank didn’t think much of it, just that sandbags were strange to have in a plane. Maybe they were there for ballasts. He knew ships used them, but planes were another matter. Didn’t planes have to be careful about carrying weight?
Frank looked at the smashed controls. He tried to switch on the radio, but it didn’t work. He was just about ready to leave for his Winnebago when he spotted a map poking out of the sun visor. He grabbed at it, unfolding it. “1942. Ummmm. And there’s an airstrip circled in red. This is curious, it shows a trail leading into the mountains.”