Perusing the Past

Describe a topic, idea, or concept you find so engaging that it makes you lose all track of time. Why does it captivate you? What or who do you turn to when you want to learn more?

The girl stares with blank, pupil-less eyes; her lips are dainty and relaxed, her hair neat and coiled. Her placid expression and plain features provide no insight as to who she is, and because only her head is displayed, I can discern little of her identity. The plaque under the portrait bust, aptly titled “Head of a Girl,” reveals as few details about the girl as her empty stare. In the “3rd Century BC,” I wonder: did she fidget as the sculptor meticulously carved her features from marble? … or was she a deity, one whose sculpture sat in the courtyard of a Greek nobleman as she sits in a museum now? Perhaps she did not exist at all, instead the imagined muse of some unnamed sculptor …

A sharp “Nat!” yanks me out of my musings; with a final glance at the Greek mystery girl’s bust, I hasten down the corridor to where my companions admire Byzantine art.

This always happens at museums -- regretting I cannot roam the corridors longer, I leave with a lack of time to explore and a surplus of pamphlets to peruse. Infinite time is not enough to absorb all the information presented by these institutions, and the information sorted into museums, books, and the Internet is not enough to form a whole, perfect idea of Earth’s history. No...

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