One of the weird things about living in The Netherlands is the constant reminder that their history is older than the history of America. It is no big deal to see artifacts from medieval times, just as you are walking around minding your own business. Just the other day we drove through a town that was proudly announcing that they were celebrating their 900th year.

Since I have been here, there have been stories about construction workers finding remains that are hundreds of years old. Just a few blocks from our house, there was a huge find in 1997. A Roman ship was discovered buried in the ground. It was in perfect condition and it was 1800 years old. The wood of the ship was dated from 148 AD. There were tools, clothing pins and even some shoes. All of this was just around the corner, I mean I could stand outside our house and wave at the ship like it was the Love Boat leaving the harbor.

Recently, there has been a new discovery. In Rotterdam, the city hall is being renovated. Archeologists were looking at the area behind this building and made quite a find: a shoe that was filled with 477 silver coins. The coins were dated from 1472-1592.  The theory is that the coins were buried under the floorboards of the building that was there during the 80 Years War (the Dutch War of Independence).

The owner of the shoe must have been nervous about putting the money in the bank or investing in the stock market. We have all heard stories about hiding money under your mattress, but not so much about shoes. This was a good amount of money, so it does make you wonder what the true story is. At this point, we can only use our imaginations.

Does this inspire anyone to get a metal detector? Start digging.

I just found out that one of my favorite writers has written a screenplay based on his book. Jonathan Tropper’s book THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU will start filming in June. It will star Tina Fey. Please check out Tropper and his books, he is such a good writer.  I also just heard that another book( that was one of my favorite reads last year) will be a film: THE RULES OF CIVILITY by Amor Towles. Cross your fingers that both films are at least as good as the books.

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  • Terri  On March 8, 2013 at 2:16 am

    How exciting! I love archeology and all things historical/old. I would love to have stood in your back yard, looking at that ship! Thanks for sharing this!

  • krunn7  On March 8, 2013 at 4:07 am

    This just makes me realize what a young country Canada is. We think of antiquities as anything found over 75 years old.

  • natascha1108  On March 8, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    This medieval riverboat was found on your birthday at the Catharijnesingel in Utrecht last month. While workers were putting in a new sewage pipeline they found a boat dating 500 to1000AD. It was made of oakwood and was about 8 meters long and 2.5 meters wide. Unfortunately the ship was damaged when earlier dams were put in to reconstruct and support the new canal. The boat is now taken to a town called Lelystad were archeologists will study and preserve it.

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