May 25, 2012

As part of my List of 13, I went today to visit a museum close by, the Thermae Maiores Museum. Don't be too impressed, it's not like you would imagine it. If you remember earlier posts (in case you've read them, because in case you don't, you have nothing to remember, obviously), I mentioned that I live in a districts of Budapest called "Óbuda", or Ancient Buda, which is the Northern district of the Capital city... on this side of the Danube at least. In here - unlike in other parts of Budapest - one can find Roman Ruins. Indeed, here was located the province of Pannonia, the North-Easter one of the Roman Empire. The Capital city of this provinec was Aqvincum, which is basically where we are located now.

Though there's an Aqvincum Museum, which I intend to discover before June, according to my List of 13, there's this Bath Museum I have been seeing a couple of times now, that has piked my curiosity. It is an inconspicuous place etched under a bridge, between the lines of a main road, but under the level of it, in a nook of a subway pass. It displays no artifacts, it has no vitrines, and only a few plastic covered posters stand here and there tell something, quite dryly about the history of this place. The entrance is for free, so anyone can come in and take a stroll along the ruins, but it seems not many people are interested in coming to take a look .

The place was completely deserted when I've got there, and truth to be told, I have never seen a single soul walk around the place. It is dirty, it has bits and pieces of junk rolling around, and it could really use some serious dusting and sweeping of cobwebs and seeds and petals from the nearby trees. Then there are parts that kinda look disappointing because you see some wall parts with a layer of red brick in it, and to my very, very limited knowledge of Ancient History, Romans didn't use symetric, factory made red bricks in their construction. Then again, that's me, and I've never really studied Ancient History (Costa Rica's Education Minister considered back then a waste of time to teach anything in school that isn't Costa Rica's history... over and over and over, so aside from systematically forgetting Costa Rican history, not much else stuck to me).

I still quite enjoyed the experience because it gave you the chance to walk around the ruins freely. It didn't smell like Romans, if you ask me, but actually getting that close to the structures, and being able to walk into them gives you an idea of what were the sizes of the rooms back in that time. To my amazement, these rooms and places seemed to me much bigger than some of the rooms I've seen that have been kept from the Medieval Times.

The information available was quite little, so I'll probably conduct some research on the matter, and make the Aqvincum Museum my next stop, just to learn a little bit more of life in Pannonia, and the life before Pannonia was conquered by the Romans. This question, at the same time, entails the topic of immigration, of the moving of people from one land to another, either by mass migration, by "colonization" or by conquest. Yesterday's conversation comes to my mind and for an instant I wonder if it is so hard for the Europeans to understand, because they haven't lived what we Americans have. But that's a topic for another post.

No comments: