I have a love of history. Not just the history that you read about in books but real history of ordinary people. That is why I find myself wandering the cemeteries and graveyards, lost in thought. I'm wondering what the lives associated with all those markers must have been like. You can tell a lot about an area or time period just by slowing down and reading the granite and marble carvings that fill our memorial parks. To view the graves of the youth that served their country in a time of war and gave everything they had can bring a tear to your eye.
Just the other day, the cold snap ended and the temperature rose. This caused the snow to melt at an alarming rate. The fog was so thick and I found myself in an old cemetery, with no camera! The old statues in the fog gave me goose bumps. I didn't want to leave. I could almost hear the spirits speaking to me, trying to tell me their stories. Stories of real people that built this country, whatever small part it might have been.
I've lightly touched the haunting cemeteries of New Orleans and after viewing the area on Google Maps, I am looking forward to spending much more time getting to know the people that lived in that city in the past.
Speaking of Google Maps, I found this article and had to pass it on to you. Imagine the stories almost piled into this place....
When you see Wadi us-Salaam, which means “Valley of Peace,” on Google Maps, you’ll have no idea what it is. From a distance, it looks like a bustling, sprawling city in Iraq, full of neighborhoods and office buildings. It covers more than 1,485 acres, which is about the size of a small town in the US. However, when you zoom in a little closer (and do some research), you’ll realize it’s definitely not a city. Although it does have the people…
Looks like a city. Not a city.
It’s actually a massive GRAVEYARD. The record-breaking graveyard contains millions of bodies, making it one of the largest on earth.
There are more bodies in here than most cities’ populations.
There is a Shiite belief that says souls of all faithful men and women will journey there, no matter where their bodies actually are.
And there’s a military presence due to the violence that has often occurred here.
Taking a closer look, you can see tombstones and memorials for the dead.
It’s so big that visitors often use bicycles.
A man is seen mourning the loss of a loved one.
And religious leaders often come to pray and worship there.
People have been buried in the cemetery for over 1,400 years, resulting in literally millions of bodies there. It’s estimated that over 500,000 additional bodies are buried here each year.
During the Iraq war in 2003, fighters in the Iraqi militia frequently used the cemetery to hide in, ambushing enemies. They knew the winding lanes and mausoleums better than anyone else. Since the wars and violence, the graveyard has expanded massively.