Monday, 12 November 2012

Now that's what I call History!

I've had the amazing opportunity to study in this country...and better yet, I've been lucky enough to travel around on weekends to see the sights. What stands out to me the most, besides the rain, is the history. And we're not talking just signing the Declaration of Independence (to rid ourselves of these people who caused quite a bit of our own history), because that happened yesterday, in British terms.

And speaking of our Founding Fathers...about a month ago, walking around London, we happened upon Benjamin Franklin's old house.

But going back much further, I've seen walls built in Roman times. These walls are old. Older than my great grandmother (who is 100 and voted a week ago, thank you very much!). Older than my country. Older than the notion that the world was flat. We're talking back in Jesus' time. That's stinking old.

Chester, where Richard grew up, is home to the most complete Roman walls in Britan, restored, but not replicated. In fact, you can take a walk around the town on top of these walls...something I got to do a couple weeks ago. What strikes me is that while walking these ancient walls, I can see an old castle, Roman amphitheatre (above), 11th century cathedral, gothic architecture, cobbled streets, and modern shops. Talk about recycling your space while conserving your history!

And you can see bits of history like this everywhere. York was no different with remnants of a fort (above), (rebuilt) Roman walls, remains of an Abbey (below), and a breathtaking cathedral (with graffiti only dating back to the 1970's, as far as we saw, cathedral below, graffiti omitted).

I even found a bit of my own history in York. A high school friend is studying in York for her master's and it was wonderful to catch up with a friend with similar life experiences. She told me about a strange coincidence she came across as well...another Fairview High School grad was in York in addition to her. And what are the odds that we would run into that old French-class friend of mine on the streets. We all had a bit of catching up to do, so we had a good laugh at the pub talking about how strange it all was.

It's going to take a lot to really understand how much history is in this country...even before Roman times. And how history is being made all around us, even in a pub with two friends from high school.

I guess it's a small world after all.

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