The Ghost of Christmas Past takes Scrooge out of the city and to a country road, to the place where Scrooge was born and raised. They walk together along the road, towards a "little market-town," where there is a bridge, a church, and a river. They then leave the road and follow a lane which leads towards a red brick mansion, "with a little weathercock-surmounted cupola, on the roof, and a bell hanging in it." Inside the mansion, there are offices in a state of disrepair. The windows are broken and the gates "decayed." There are stables outside and sheds "overrun with grass."
Inside the mansion they find a "bare, melancholy room," filled with lines of desks, and at one of the desks a boy reading near a small fire. The boy is Scrooge's past self, and this building used to be his old boarding school.
After the school, the Ghost of Christmas Past takes Scrooge back to the city—specifically, back to the warehouse where Scrooge, as a young man, was apprenticed. It is Christmas Eve, and his employer, Mr. Fezziwig, treats all the workers to a "domestic ball." After the ball, Scrooge's fiancée, Belle, ends their relationship when she realizes that he is more concerned with money than he is with her.
The next place that Scrooge is taken to is a noisy, homely room, where he sees a happy family playing and laughing together. The scene is "tumultuous" but very happy and loving. Scrooge learns that this is the life that Belle went on to lead after she left him. At this point, Scrooge pleads with the ghost to show him nothing more.