A remarkable encounter

Two years later, I was visiting a museum exhibition in Rome about the recent discoveries from Pompeii and Santorini. The exhibition was arranged in such a way that the visitor could feel as if they were part of the ancient community. I walked through the life of these ancient people as I looked at their pots and plates, accessories, house walls, and some items from their gardens.

There were in fact quite a lot of displays related to gardens. I learned in that exhibition that a garden was an important place of socialization for wealthy people at the time where the guests spent most of their time eating, conversing, and enjoying music and dances provided by the host.

I don’t quite recall if it was in the section of Pompeii or Santorini, but I came upon a room full of colourful garden walls. The walls had a painting of a garden so that the guests in the real garden could have an enhanced garden experience. I saw many plants, flowers and birds painted in great details. The view was purely amazing.

One part of the wall particularly drew my attention. It felt strangely familiar to me. I looked closer and realized that it was a rose garden. I looked even closer. There was a bird sitting on a pole in the rose garden. My heart skipped a beat.

“Wait, wait, wait!”

I shouted in surprise. Fortunately, there was nobody else in the room. I went as close to the wall as possible and confirmed that it was the same painting that I had once found on the card box in Edmonton. No wonder there was no artist’s name in the back of the card box because the art belonged to such an ancient painting.

It was such a special feeling to rediscover the tiny piece of art I had once found and loved on a card box in a place so far away, in a painting so ancient.