The grand room was dimly lit. Treasures of ancient times stood here. I walked through the big gate, its intricate doors wide open and looked up. There was the first of them, in front of me and above me. It filled out the entire room. Considering its size, it only had a tiny head, a tiny skull, so to say. Its neck was the longest I have ever seen, its rib cage massive and its tail was even longer than its neck.
I knew its name: Diplodocus. The skeleton dominated the room but this one was not even fully grown when it was alive. However, it was not a real one. It was a copy. I could clearly see that the bones shimmered grey. They were made out of some artificial substance, maybe clay, maybe plastic? But it mattered not. I was in awe anyway. I was in love.
I pictured the sauropod in its natural habitat half a world away on the planes of a massive continent slowly breaking apart. It was a green earth, filled with vegetation, dinosaurs on land, reptiles in the sea and in the sky. And among all of them the diplodocus was a giant, one of the biggest ones. Years ago, I watched a documentary on dinosaurs where the scales of the diplodocus were grey. I wondered if they could maybe have been green to blend in with its surrounding. Or they could have been an altogether different colour too. So many reptiles of the present sparkled in all different colours, yellow, pink and purple. That would be quite something. A giant dinosaur shimmering in pink.
And then a different thought entered my mind as I walked past the diplodocus. Was this maybe one of the dinosaurs that already had feathers? I imagined this huge beast covered in beautiful feathers like a bird of paradise! What a marvellous sight that would be! It would not look like a creature of a different time but of a different planet altogether.
And it was truly that. It was a different planet. In one hundred million years everything changes. One world transforms into another.
I looked at a glass showcase. Behind the glass were more dinosaur bones and some petrified eggs, forever frozen in time. For a moment I looked at the glass and could see my reflection. Everything changes in one hundred million years. I wondered if in one hundred million years’ time creatures will wonder what our skin was covered in. Maybe they would imagine us in colour too, rainbow skin or blue or green, how would they ever know? Because we don’t know what the skin of dinosaurs really looked like.
I turned around and looked at the diplodocus again. What a ridiculous thought. No one would ever care about our remains. Our average hight is just more than one metre. We are no giants. We don’t leave scary teeth or massive footprints behind. Everything we have built will have turned to sand and stone by then. Our bones might be fossilised but they won’t fill future beings with awe and wonder. Our bones are small and our teeth are square and not long and sharp. When humans are dead and gone from this world there will be nothing left exciting about us.
One comment on “Treasures of the Past, Part I: Scales and Feathers”
interessanter Aspekt, toll gedacht