“You have two minutes, you get to take two photos, and you must be blindfolded.”
We never thought we’d see the day, but our mission of finally going to see the bomb shelter at Penn Manor was happening.
Our guide, who showed the area on the condition his name would be kept anonymous, had strict guidelines for us to follow if we were going to see this bomb shelter.
We were told by our guide that, once we got to the bomb shelter, we would be allowed to soak in the mysteriousness for only two minutes, only capture two photographs, and our anonymous guide was going to drive us there while we were blindfolded in the backseat.
We immediately agreed to these terms despite their stringency and we patiently waited for the day to come that suited our unidentified conductor to lead us to our destination.
Our anonymous subject finally set a date for us to meet so we could embark on our highly anticipated journey.
We anxiously arrived early to school on a day when seniors would normally sleep in due to the PSSA tests, but we would have come early on a regular day if it meant we could see the bomb shelter.
With our blindfolds and camera ready to go, we entered a school van that our guide would take us to the bomb shelter in.
“Keep your blindfolds on tight, and don’t peak!” said our guide who was timid for maybe the first time ever. Maybe it was because it was the first time he was taking two blindfolded students in a beat up van around the school.
The ride was jerky, uncomfortable and took a lot longer than we expected, and after a short run in with the cops, our guide finally got us to our objective.
Still blindfolded, our director guided us to the bomb shelter one at a time.
Once we were both sealed inside, we were granted the right to remove our blindfolds.
Low and behold, the place we were dying to get a glimpse of was right before our non-blindfolded eyes.
A huge empty room with nothing but pipes, tanks, wires spread all throughout the enclosed walls.
The room was large, dungeon-resembling, and the smell of wet leaves lingered in the air.
We didn’t know where to start, and we only had two minutes, so the questions started flying out of our mouths.
Where does this door lead? Where does that door lead? What does this do? Where does that pipe lead to? Where are we?!
Pacing, we spotted a door. A very dark, looming door.
“That’s it. That’s the shelter.” said our anonymous guide.
We were practically shaking.
For years we have been searching, and looking for answers. Finally, we found it. Our ultimate dream. Our ultimate goal.
“Alright, time is up. Time to go.”
We forgot about the time limit.
Luckily we took multiple pictures, but this mysterious door five feet in front of us now had our attention more than the room we were in.
Before we left we demanded to know what was behind this door.
“There are stairs that lead down to the shelter,” said our guide. “Those pipes lead down to it and have a big supply of water.”
“That’s where I’d be heading if anything bad ever happens,” said our subject.
We begged. We pleaded.
But, a contract is a contract and we are not ones to go against our word. It was time to go.
With one last look, we gloomily put on our bandannas and packed our bags. We were led up the stairs and into the van once more. It was time to part with this magical land of shelters.
Did we make it? Sort of.
We proved that there is truth behind this ‘myth.’ There is a shelter here at Penn Manor. But it is our time to close the book on this investigation for we have made it one step closer then any other student in recent Penn Manor history. It is time to pass the torch to the next bomb shelter believers.
Also, it is time to move on to our next endeavor.
No, not college.
“So, did they show you the underground tunnels too?”
By Dessie Jackson and Cody Erb