Maps

I have always loved maps. Maps of anywhere. It doesn’t really matter. Maps of places I’ve been are nice. I can pick out all the places I remember and think about them and admire them, all nicely organized on the orderly map.Maps of places I’ve never been are more fun, pouring over the strange places, turning their exotic names on my tongue, imagining how they are. When I was a kid I loved those topographical globes. I would run my fingers over all the places I wanted to go, the Himalayas, Alps and Andes. The Nile and the Amazon, the great rift valley and the jungles of Brazil. Australia and Alaska, then, fingers wandering into the ocean, I would feel all the tiny bumps of the south pacific and the Aegean Sea, my brain so busy imagining this cornucopia of life that it would nearly explode. It used to exhaust me, my virtual traveling. There was no corner of the world (excepting possibly Antarctica–and I would have happily gone there too if someone had bought me a ticket)that did not arouse my interest, nothing I would cull from my list. When I was very young, I wanted to be an explorer,  before I found out that wasn’t really a job. Some ancestor must have also had my predilection for maps, as my grandmother’s attic had numerous old atlases, some so old that they had areas marked, “uncharted territory”, or annotated, “largely unexplored”. I was ready to rectify that. Eventually I got old enough to realize that other people had already taken care of this, usually during the previous century!

Nonetheless, I have retained the craving to know what lies beyond the next bend in the river, never content to rely solely on the informative character of a map, but wanting, rather, to know for myself, by virtue of seeing it with my own eyes. I desire to wander off the edges of the maps, into unexplored lands. Alas, I was born at the wrong moment in history, too late to explore the untrammeled parts of this world and too soon to explore the worlds humanity will venture to in coming centuries. So I will continue to peruse maps, planning imaginary trips with road atlases, touring Ireland with county maps, sailing the Black Sea whenever a globe presents itself. The internet has become a valuable asset in my virtual touring, but my first allegiance will always be to maps and in my deepest heart I will always regret that I was born too late for any of them to say, “and THERE BE DRAGONS!”

 

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2 Comments

  1. leafstrewngirl said,

    June 12, 2013 at 6:01 pm

    A good curiousity to have! Cool post. 🙂

    • witchyluck said,

      June 13, 2013 at 3:25 pm

      Thank you. It just goes along with my natural nosiness. 😉


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