Toy train mishap ruins Christmas

November 30, 2017 — by Roland Shen

Excitedly running through the dining room, I inhaled the mouthwatering aromas of ham and crab and bolted straight for the Christmas tree. I was 7 years old at the time, and we had just purchased a new battery-powered train, complete with a circular track.

A few days prior, I had spotted the train set at a Toys “R” Us while looking for gifts to get my cousins. The display train was gorgeous — its red and green lining sparkled at all angles, and the wheels rolled so smoothly on the tracks that it was nearly silent.

Best of all, it was on sale — $10 off its original price of $29.99. My dad saw the train and was enticed by it before I even had the chance to begin my usual begging. We left the store with a gargantuan box and a huge smile on my face.

Now we were going to install it right beneath our tree. It took just an hour to assemble, and my eyes gleamed as I turned the train on. It began whirling around the tree — the train was alive.

I proceeded to stare at our household’s newest attraction for the next 15 minutes, until I heard the doorbell ring.


I instantly recognized the shrill voice: it was Henry. Our first guest was here for Christmas dinner. Henry rushed into the living room, where I was still gaping at the train as it took its 30th lap around the tree.

Henry was always a nice kid and a good friend, but his defining characteristic was always his craziness, a seemingly infinite pool of energy.

“WHAT’S THAT?” he said.

Promptly answering him, I explained how it was a new train and my Christmas present. Suddenly, out of impulse, he belly-flopped right onto the track, which split in two. I gaped in pure horror.

“How is the train moving?” Henry said.

Henry then grabbed the train and began to swing it around like a rope. It was quite a long train, one with multiple compartments each connected by a thin piece of plastic. The train snapped and its wheels slowed to a stop.

Thanks to Henry, I was able to spend only 15 minutes with my favorite toy. Soon after, my parents, along with Henry’s parents, walked in, seeing my puddle of tears and a genuinely confused Henry sitting on the hardwood floor.

I hoped my parents would scold Henry for what he had done, but they simply laughed. A few days later, we returned to Toys “R” Us and saw the same train set, now even cheaper because of the store’s post-Christmas sale. The same beaming expression appeared on my face, and my dad quickly noticed it.

“No,” Dad said.


Add new comment

Prove that you're human:

Photo of the week

Hundreds attended the Music Boosters annual pancake breakfast and concert on May 6.


What kind of classes do you think the school needs more of?


Falcon In Print


Senior Prom to be at Exploratorium

Congresswoman holds gun violence forum

Club to participate in annual trip to Beijing