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Sunday, 22 July 2012

What could have been...

Hi all,

I've always loved history ever since I could walk I think.  It took me a while to figure this out back then, but not only does history drive imagination, it is imagination.  To look at what went before and dream something just as good or better.  I love ancient history (and modern history too but that is another post).  I got the chance to travel quite a bit over the last few years and one thing I loved above all else was to visit the ancient sites in the local area.

The world, as we know it, is replete with amazing ancient civilizations.  The Aztecs, Incas, and Mayans of South America; the Ancient Egyptians, Greeks, Carthaginians, Romans, and Persians around the Mediterranean, and the lesser known Ancient Indian civilizations; the roll call is almost thankfully endless.  I love visiting places that just ooze history out of every nook and crevice.  I've included a few pics from some of my travels.  They can't even begin to describe the experience of actually being there though.

Giza Plateau, Cairo
Parthenon, Athens
Colosseum, Rome

These monuments and cities rose up from the pure toil of others.  There was no modern machinery to help with the heavy lifting or supercomputers to calculate engineering loads or precise star charts.  In fact, many of the blocks of stones found at these ancient sites still can not be lifted by modern machinery!

I've walked through the often shattered remains of these, still greatly awe-inspiring, sites where sometimes only a single column stands where once there were hundreds, reaching for the sky or holding up feat defying stone roof.  And one question always shadows my thoughts - what could have been... no, what must have been?  Take for example the picture below.  It shows the ruins of the Temple of Olympian Zeus, once the largest temple in Ancient Greece.  Today only 15 beautiful Corinthian columns remain where there were once 104.  At its prime, it would have been a breath-taking building.  It gave me shivers just standing next to it in present day.  Some say that only 30% of the ancient works of Egypt have been discovered.  Imagine that there are still 70% lying beneath the sand somewhere!  And what of the civilizations we don't know about...

Temple of Olympian Zeus, Athens

All of these musings have given me an idea.  Something I'll 'announce' in my next blog post.  I've always wanted to do it but have never had the set of skills

Happy travels

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