Dust to Dust

For a long time I’ve collected rocks from places we visit and placed them out in the flower beds. This was somewhat inspired by Chicago’s Tribune Tower, where stones from famous sites and structures are embedded in the wall around the building’s perimeter.

Naturally, we needed something from Romania, so I grabbed a stray brick when we were visiting the ruins of the Slimnic Citadel, a 14th century fortification that’s seen better days.

OK, that was irresponsible. If everyone who visited made off with a brick, pretty soon there would be nothing left — and indeed it looked like much of the castle ended up in the walls of the village below.

Interestingly, what survived for centuries in Transylvania did not fare well in my garden. The brick rapidly fell to pieces and continues to erode a little at a time.

Is it the climate here in New York, or are we just seeing the normal progression of things? This is the place where metaphors and analogies usually go, but for today let’s just we’ll leave it at that.

One thought on “Dust to Dust

  1. I grabbed some stones from some of the old Erie/Champlain Canal locks in Watervliet and Cohoes and put them in my garden . . . and the same thing happened!!!! Maybe just the act of pulling them from their protected spots and exposing them, raw, to the elements brings on the stone rot?

    Worse: I went fossil hunting a couple of months ago and came home with a nearly pristine and amazing looking 65 million year old bivalve. It had a little bit of stray material in between some of the grooves in its shell, so I soaked it in water a bit and brushed it with a toothbrush to make it 100% perfect . . . and a huge chunk of it sheared off into the sink.

    It survived eons in the wild, but not a day in my kitchen. I think there’s a lesson here, though I do not know what it might be . . .

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