The discovery of a new tomb in the Valley of the Kings and the species in New Guinea is unbelievably cool. Amidst the strife and frustration in the world spanning culture, relegion, art, expression, science, war, the environment and pretty much everything some curious, intelligent and adventurous people are getting on with it and finding new things in a very 18th and 19th century kind of way. By going out and doing stuff. Being lowered into a jungle by helicopter because even the indigenous population have no idea on how to get there. By going to the most thoroughly excavated place on the planet and seeing what else might be kicking about.
Now, granted, the archeaologists weren't looking for a tomb. But they were still there, looking for something. Huts of some description I believe.
So the book on discovery isn't closed. And we are still so ignorant of our own planet and our own ancient history that it shouldn't be closed. Of course, it's not easy. There are the years in libraries and labs and lectures preceding and following these adventures that make them possible. But the adventures are what hook people, and inspire the next generation to suffer mind-numbing years of frustrating research to earn their right to adventure. And I hope that there are kids in the world right now who watch the news and maybe even read the paper who, instead of being frightened at the war, unrest, naysayers and paranoid meteorologists, look at the images of the sarcophogi in Egypt or the new frogs, birds and tree kangaroos and are filled with wonder. Who choose to be excited, interested, curious and to read more, instead of filling with fear of the outside world and the cultures to be found in it. Who want to find something new themselves.
We'll see. But I know I was certainly impressed and filled with not a small amount of wonder. Not enough to retrain as either an archaeologist or field biologist. But if there's ever a chance to stowaway and be useful on a dig or expedition, sign me up. I'll chronicle it.