And to think that just a couple of months ago an underground abandoned street from the Black Death was open…
And drawing in ghoulish visitors in Edinburgh.
It might just give us solace though to reflect that our forebears had it worse.
A city under a city… The Real Mary King’s Close
It wasn’t just that the residents of Mary King’s Close https://www.realmarykingsclose.com were boarded up, they didn’t even have Netflix.
You can see how they lived on a trip to the Scottish capital https://edinburgh.org where the Old Town seeps horrible history.
How they lived in the Middle Ages
The Eyam Plague Village Museum https://www.eyam-museum.org.uk, in Derbyshire in the English Midlands, is another example of how Medieval people lived with The Plague.
In their case sealing their village off in a remarkable feat of self-sacrifice from their neighbours.
Our pandemic will pass, and will become a chapter in history alongside the Plague of Athens and the Plague of Justinian.
So how will we chronicle these days in which we live?
Well, we have started already, curating the artefacts, masks, robes, PPE and everyday objects that we surround ourselves with just now.
And the everyday stories that inform and entertain.
It will come as little surprise then that it is the idiosyncratic, curious and super-efficient Germans who have been to the fore here.
Oh, the Cologne
Historian Rita Wagner has been curating a time capsule of the spring of 2020 for future generations for Cologne City Museum
Germans know from their own tragic war history that it is vital not to forget.
Cologne https://www.cologne-tourism.com, a city I know from my nearby Oktoberfest adventures, stands proudly with its cathedral at its centrepoint against the ravages of adversity.
Oh, Vienna, it means something to me
While Wien University https://www.univie.ac.at/en/ (Vienna to you and me) put out an invitation to the public.
To contribute to their collection via email and the.’Corona Memory’ tag.
One of my favorite objects is a crocheted coronavirus,” says museum director Matti Bunzl.
‘It is not only cute, it shows that objects are ambassadors of their time.”
Not so sure about ‘cute’ Matti but it does help to demystify the bug. https://www.wien.info/en.
Finns can only get better
Finland is the happiest country in the world and has a healthy recognition that death is part of life and life is for living.
And they too at the National Museum of Finland https://www.kansallismuseo.fi/en/.
We all love a fairytale
Where when all of this is over it will all be in the one place in Vesthimmerlands Museum https://www.visitvesthimmerland.com/vesthimmerland/planlaeg-din-tur/vesthimmerlands-museum-gdk597684
America may have lost its moral direction in leadership through this crisis but that will surely be temporary.
As its own history shows as evidence in its Smithsonian Museums.
The jewel of the Smithsonian Museums
The National Museum of African American History and Culture https://nmaahc.si.edu is the jewel in the Smithsonian crown.
And they too are curating how we are living our lives now.
Whether long red ties and take-aways of diet Coca-Cola and burgers from up Pennsylvania Avenue will make the cut…
Well, we’ll just have to wait and see.