Friday, February 17, 2006

Where Others Have Walked

Yesterday, the Associated Press reported on a 6,500 year-old gold pendant that a hiker discovered last year in a Greek field.

The experts are saying that the pendant "probably had religious significance and would have been worn on a necklace by a prominent member of society."

The pendant is roughly 1 1/2 inches in diameter, is from the Neolithic period, and was made around 4500 B.C. At the time the pendant was made, archaeologists posit that Greece's early farming settlements were developing into more structured trading centers and supporting craftsmen who were skilled metalworkers. Beyond that, however, much about the period remains a mystery.

The woman who found the pendant did not want a reward and remains anonymous.

Many things have changed in the past 6500 years. But many other things have remained constant. We still value gold and fashion it into jewelry. Farmers still congregate in cities to sell their produce. And people still enjoy hiking in fields.

We are not the first. Others lived here long before us. Others have sat where I am sitting. Others have come and gone, loved and lost, dreamed and died -- many times over. We live where others have walked.

History lurks at every corner and is trampled underfoot every day. 6500 years ago someone dropped a gold pendant in a field, where it remained until a few months ago. Makes me wonder what some hiker will discover of ours in another 6500 years -- and what it will have to say about us.