As they approached the alley, Annabett shouted, "The trees; they're huge! I remember when my father planted them. Measured the distance between each hole by a piece of leather cord his master cut."
"How long since you last saw this place?" Dorcas asked. Her attention focused on the elegant white mansion at the far end of the tree-lined path with its porch roof balanced atop twenty-eight, two-story columns.
"Three-hundred years, I suppose. The master took us back to France when I was five."
"Let's hurry along. There's a tour starting." Dorcas sailed beneath the unbroken, quarter-mile canopy of live oak trees.
"Welcome to Oak Alley," the guide said. "Riverboat pilots named this plantation for the magnificent double row of trees lining the entrance road. They are quite old."
"Older than the house. Older than New Orleans," Annabett shouted from her position beneath the trees.
The people gathered beside the guide did not hear but Annabett spotted a boy looking at her through a small box.
"What's he doing?" she said to Dorcas.
"He's taking a photograph of the alley with his iPhone. Let's materialize just for a few seconds. We'll be a sensation on YouTube."
Cynthia Becker [Pueblo, CO] is the author of the middle grade biography Chipeta: Ute Peacemaker, winner of the 2009 WILLA Finalist Award in Children's/YA Literature. She blogs at http://chipeta.wordpress.com
© 2009 Cynthia Becker. Original for CCF. Becker grants CCF first electronic rights for one month; CCF may archive the material indefinitely and include it in an eBook anthology.