“Wow! Look at this!”
“Finally . . . maybe we will find clues here.”
The two had traveled for many days when they stumbled upon it. Nestled among the gently rolling hills lay what they presumed must have been a small “town.” Eager to explore, they left the wide lanes of the path they had been following and made their way into the overgrown, deserted ruins.
The town was small, with modest concrete slabs where dwellings had once stood. Scattered about were a few broken crosses of various materials strewn around larger slabs. One of the travelers almost cut his hand when he picked up a shard of colored glass.
“What do you think these crossed pieces signify?”
“I don’t know.”
What had once perhaps been the center of business was now a series of heaps of rubble in rows along one concrete path, which intersected with another. Since the printing had faded and the storefronts had crumbled, it was impossible to discern the nature of these places of trade.
As they doggedly continued their search, they were rewarded with a valuable find. Near the center of the town was the site that would surely yield the clues they had been searching for: clues to the character of this society that had so suddenly and mysteriously vanished.
They had discovered what had been the largest building in the small town. Its size was impressive, with its ruins covering an entire “city block.” Huge white columns still stood as a testimony to the quality of this edifice. Obviously the inhabitants had used only the best materials and the most skilled workmen to construct this imposing structure.
Persevering in their effort to uncover information, they picked their way through the piles of brick and plaster and glass until they came to the large cornerstone. Some of the engraving had been destroyed, but they could make out some of the letters and numbers.
” Est . . . ”
“F_ _ st Sta _e B_nk”
They both pondered the enormity of what they were seeing. It was awe-inspiring. The moment deserved reverence. Several moments passed before the younger one said to his companion . . .
“What do you suppose this was — a temple to their gods?”