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The original world nomad "Real knowledge is to know the extent of one's ignorance." - Confucius.

How can a pot be so interesting?

GREECE | Thursday, 18 October 2007 | Views [2763]

Well, it can be 5,000 years old for start. If that seems like a long time, try imagining a man or woman making it in their home and what that might have looked like. It is hard to imagine the world in say the year 2407 and almost impossible to have any concept of the world in the year 3007, but if you go forward the same time-span you arrive at October 7007.

That gives a little perspective and when you look at the work of those people 5,000 years ago it is quite humbling.

"€40 for an ice cream and two cups of coffee" floated across from one family as they passed us on the street. Since the introduction of the Euro, Greece has become more than a little expensive and Santorini is probably worse than most places. Even the Americans, those ultimate consumers, are complaining. Yes, the mighty US dollar is plummeting but the family who passed us on the street were complaining about it in local currency! If they'd converted it to their home currency they would really have squealed.

We too have avoided cafés when they try to charge more for instant coffee made with salty water than I paid in Toyko at the height of the bubble: €4.00 (A$6.50)

We have been here almost a week and when you wake every morning and gaze out across the volcano that is Santorini, it gradually dawns on you the sheer size of the explosion that would have been required to create a hole that big.

Unpleasant as it may be, try to imagine the largest nuclear weapon and the size of the hole that would make. I'm imagining a crater maybe 50m deep and say 500m across ... that's a pretty big hole if you think about it. Well, Santorini is a hole that is 600m deep and 7km across, so by my uneducated maths you are going to need something about 280 times as huge to make this sort of hole.

If you then try to imagine the tsunami such an explosion would have created it's pretty daunting. I thought someone must have done some estimates so I went looking and this scientific paper suggests a tsunami 42m high, reaching coasts over 1000km away and destroying cities on closer islands more than 250m above sea level.

When you look at the timeline of these pots they become significantly cruder post 1450 BC as the devastation destroyed cultures, civilisations and trade.

I still can't for the life of me form any view of the year 7007.

Tags: ancient, culture, disaster, perspective, philosophy, santorini, tsunami

 

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