After the unveiling of the 'Roman couch' two years ago, I had not been to an event in my home town for my employers, the local council again. Although it was a bit last minute, we were glad to cooperate with the unveiling - it's always nice to do something this local - plus I enjoy being employed as a Roman by my own boss! I took the kids with me, since both of them are already very familiar with what I do, plus we had a job for them. This monument, like the last one we did, is the last in a series of 14 modern artworks (the other 13 from the hands of local artist Marijn te Kolsté) for our local touristic cycling route, known as the TRAP-route (see map).
artwork is shaped like a big signpost, 8 metres high and
11 metres wide, on which one can read Hier wordt
gewerkt aan geschiedenis; intussen vervliegt de tijd,
onherroepelijk, which translated means "here
history is being made, meanwhile time flies, irrevocably".
The sentence itself is derived from the famous line of
the poet Virgil: Sed fugit interea fugit
irreparabile tempus, which means, "But it flees
in the meantime: irretrievable time flees", which is
the source for the famous quote 'tempus fugit -
time flies' (Georgics 3.284-5).
We arrived just after 3 pm, with just the catering present, plenty of time to dresss the kids 9who got out of school early for this) and myself. Mid-day event like this are always a bit hectic, and as a result I forgot to take the helmet with me. No great loss in the end, for it helped my collegues to recognise me better.. We dressed up fairly quickly, for the first guests had begun arriving: the local councillors, the direction as well as lots of collegues, the local archaeology groups, the press and of course the people from JSA.
The guest having arrived, the show was taken further by alderman Jan Koudijs, who introduced the audience to the political and cultural background of the ceremony and the site. The kids then offered him a large Roman jar, on the bottom of which he founda pair of Roman scissors, to festively cut the blue ribbon and unveil the artwork. We then all climbed to the top, not easy because both Jeroen and myself wore out newly hobnailed shoes, which do not easily climb iron stairs! At the top there was another speech, which we closed by reading the Latin original and the Dutch translation of the words below us. When the architect in turn had held his speech we could finally descend again, not too soon because it was kinda chilly up there!
All in all a very fruitful afternoon.
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