Good Evening, God!
Tomorrow we fly home . . . I’m ready, God! Really ready! Both my wonderful husband, Kit, and I have rested and mostly recovered from the Boston Marathon tragedy. Still, God, there is a certain amount of wear and tear involved in traveling.
Ah, but not as much wear and tear as earlier! On our trips Kit drives while I navigate. I love watching that small blue ball travel along the map on my iPhone! Now I know right away when we have made a wrong turn!
It’s so different from the life folks lived back in the 18oos. Kit and I took a trip back in time today when we visited Old Sturbridge Village which portrays farm life in 1838. One of the things that surprised me was this fire pit. It was used almost all year long. Big pots were hung over it for cooking, for heating water for laundry, making soap, boiling maple syrup, and cleaning the fleece from sheep so they could turn it into wool and then into clothing.
All those tasks were made more “real” by seeing this fire pit. Those tasks were a normal part of farm life. Gosh, my mother’s father grew up on a farm and one of his sisters made her own soap for years. Speaking of soap, one sign in the Village said that soap was just coming into use in the 1830s. Before that water and a good scrub was what they used. Yikes! No soap, no deodorant, no electricity . . . no iPhones!
And now I stop and try to imagine 2138 . . . I can’t even begin . . . even with the help of Star Trek. . .
So, thank You, God. Thank You that I live in This Time, and in This Place. And truly, the best part of traveling is coming home.
Sturbridge is a bit wrong about soap, which is pretty ancient stuff. From wikipedia — The earliest recorded evidence of the production of soap-like materials dates back to around 2800 BC in ancient Babylon. A formula for soap consisting of water, alkali, and cassia oil was written on a Babylonian clay tablet around 2200 BC.
The Ebers papyrus (Egypt, 1550 BC) indicates the ancient Egyptians bathed regularly and combined animal and vegetable oils with alkaline salts to create a soap-like substance. Egyptian documents mention a soap-like substance was used in the preparation of wool for weaving.
In the reign of Nabonidus (556–539 BC), a recipe for soap consisted of uhulu [ashes], cypress [oil] and sesame [seed oil] “for washing the stones for the servant girls”.
I think the sign was referring to the use of soap in NE farms But many thanks for the interesting info!
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