After sharing his name, “All stood amazed, until an old woman, tottering out from among the crowd, put her hand to her brow, and peering under it in his face for a moment exclaimed, “sure enough! it is Rip Van Winkle—it is himself. Welcome home again, old neighbor. Why, where have you been these twenty long years?” (105). Rip tells the story of falling asleep and he is quickly named an elder of the village. Readers my question why the villagers don’t at all question Rip’s justification for being missing.
In the realistic world apart from mystical and magical happenings, it is easy for readers to have questions about the unspoken and unexplained in the account of Rip Van Winkle. Despite the fact that Washington Irving writes irrational and child like stories, it is also refreshing for readers both past and present to occupy their time with lighthearted entertainment in a time when the world is very depressing and