by Debra E. Marvin
Where did history meet you?
Where did it wink, turn, urge you to follow?
Was it in a schoolroom nudging the back of your brain through the words of a teacher?
Perhaps a lesson given via a stuttering filmstrip? (didn’t the filmstrip always have a problem necessitating the help of a boy from the Audio Visual club? Well, at least back in the sixties and seventies. By the way, those nerdy boys are all making big bucks now.)
Was it on a trip to a small, musty museum or the filing past of a fife and drum corps in a parade? Or hearing stories told by your parents, your grandparents, a reenactor or docent?
Or did you first leave your present, everyday world through the pages of fiction?
Image via Wikipedia
Maybe history never teased you. Maybe you’ve never really stepped through its doors.
That would sadden me. History is a real place—a place of imagination, possibilities, joys and sorrows. You’ll find skirmishes, chisels working at stone, horses pawing at dusty trails and snorting with impatience, and the sound of workaday chatter between neighbors, merchants, servants and lairds.
I smell it. I hear it. I feel it.
Can you smell the meal in a colonial hearth? Hear the snap of a schooner’s canvas? Feel the anxiety of a family saying goodbye to a loved one off to a new land, perhaps never to return?
I’ve always liked history. Something along the way got into my head and became my world of play. I don’t remember when but it continues to be kindled by books, movies, travels. It’s still my world of play and I admit I’m often annoyed when it’s time to leave and come back to the present. I’m not alone. Anyone who writes historicals can tell you we love our modern medicine, but…
Maybe being a dreamer, a wanderer in another century is, to you, a waste of time. That’s okay. Think what you will. It won’t bother me because, frankly, I might be sitting here, but I’m looking at you from another time and place.
Are you able to choose one favorite historical period and setting?
Where would you spend a day if we could get our Inktropolis Time Machine up and running?