The Time Traveler begins his story by describing by in detail what the "peculiar sensations of time travel" feel like. At the start, he is traveling approximately one day per minute, but by the end of his journey, that pace has increased to over one year per minute. After what feels like an eternity of swaying on the machine, the Time Traveler builds up the nerve to stop by pulling on the second of the two levers. The inertia of the Time Traveler and the machine causes him to fly helplessly through the air as he tugs on the lever to bring his journey to a crashing halt. He finds himself amidst a terrible hailstorm that soon subsides, allowing him to better view this future land. The first thing he sees is a giant stature, apparently made from marble and carved in the shape of a sphinx with it's wings outspread. With the storm over, "people" that have noticed the appearance of an outsider come rushing to the time machine for a closer inspection. The first to reach him is referred to as a man and described as being four feet tall, clad in a purple tunic with some type of belt around the waistline. "He struck me as being a beautiful and graceful creature, but indescribably frail.At the sight of him, I suddenly regained confidence."