For as long as I can remember, I’ve been inspired by old things. It seemed like, as a little kid, I was always imagining myself as some knight of the realm or old pioneer, striding across the valleys of the world to pitch a tent in some far off place. Somehow, the world of history was of more consequence than the world at hand. I felt more at home in the past.
I’ve been lucky enough to travel to some pretty old places. Two in particular stand out – London and Turkey (specifically, Ephesus). In London, I stood in the Tower of London and saw the places where some famous Brits were imprisoned or worse. Henry VIII’s giant codpiece was directly in front of me. I saw Roman walls and old Norman artifacts.
In Ephesus, I walked along streets that had once been filled with Greeks, speaking of the news of the day. I stood in the amphitheatre where Paul addressed the jeering crowds. I breathed in thousands of years of habitation and history, yet I was also acutely aware of the desolation of the place – it has not been lived in for some time.
I’m not sure why old things have such power over me, but I feel that humans are inclined in some way to remember bits and bobs outside of our experience. I’m troubled when people forget the past, sometimes angrily. It’s all part of learning…or something like that.