Althea was immediately swiped by the history of the place. It looked exactly like the Immersion Tour she had take in preparation, as the Immerse is designed to do, but it didn't feel the same. It's always different to see something in person rather than a virtual representation of it. It smelled of history. Which smelled of the aforementioned stone, olives, and body odour. So so much body odour. Which is what history usually smells like.
From where she was, she could see the Temple Mount. Reveling in the grandeur, beauty, and palpable electricity of this formerly holy site in the midst of its peak holy value. Like seeing the Beatles in their prime, she was witnessing the Temple Mounts' White Album.
All around it people were praying and braying. Entering the Second Temple. Preparing for the First Night of Passover. It was an ant farm of orderly movement and excitement. The anticipation was so strong she could almost reach out and taste it. And it tasted like unripe finger limes.
It seemed to her as if everyone knew tonight was destined to be one of the most historical evenings of the CE period. They didn't of course, it was just her own cognitive transference, and she had seen enough of these Earth shakers to know that. It still felt that way. And it added to the enjoyment of the trip for her.
In her early personal reviews, which no one had read, other than perhaps her Mother, and even then only about half of them, Althea had formulated a recipe for what makes a Drop memorable. Historical significance was a top five ingredient.
This Drop has that in spades.
Almost to illustrate that point, there were several gardeners nearby using what can only be called rudimentary spades. Looking very much like modern spades. Some things don't change much throughout time. A shovel is a shovel is a shovel. Except for an ultrasonic quantum laser shovel. Which, is a shovel, but also ultrasonic and laser-y.
Althea discretely looked at her Ock and noted that she had a few hours to kill before having to get to her primary stop. So she decided to look around.
Jerusalem circa 33 CE was a buzzin' and a happenin'. Aided by the fact that it was the precipice of a widely celebrated holiday. Things were a go all around, and she hadn't made it more than five steps from the alley.
The city lay out in panorama before her, with people moving in all directions, like a sturdily masoned Escher painting.
She mused that it didn't look like a place that would be razed to the ground in a few short years. Then again, what amongst us does? Everything is standing until it's not.
One thing she noticed was the diversity of people. A jigsaw puzzle of mismatched pieces somehow fitting together. Arabs, Canaanites, Romans, Greeks, all mingling together into one nice copper bottomed melting pot. Invasion does have its upside!
She marked a place on her Ock and ambled towards it.
First stop, the shopping district.
Shop At Your Drop
Shopping is a delicate enterprise on a Drop. There are very strict weight restrictions in place. Since a person (thing, and, on the very rare occasion, place) is essentially unraveled then re-spooled during a Drop, there's only so much extra baggage one can de-re-materialize. So you have to be extremely selective on what you choose to bring back with you.
Unless you want to pay an exorbitant 'send later' fee and have a personal Dropper act as your pack mule. That's only if you have the vouches, and/or you really really need that snazzy looking marble bust from the age of enlightenment.
On top of the weight restriction, and arguably more important (there have been many such arguments on just this topic, the last one resulting in a giant rift opening up between the two sides of the Drop Shopping Department. An actual rift, caused by a particularly persuasive employee aiming to prove his point by carrying back more weight than set out in the guidelines, the product of which cutting a slice through space/time, the reverberations felt through many centuries until a team of Time Stitchers closed it up. Sufficed to say, the arguments on the subject these days use colourful slide presentations rather than actual deployments), is the 'butterfly exemption'. A quick surreptitious scan with your Ock of the item you want to purchase should tell you if it is of any historical significance, or if your plucking it out of time will ripple throughout eternity and make sure that your grandma is never born. Or something much more severe. Nothing against your grandma. She is likely a lovely woman.
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Right Place, Write TimeScience Fiction
Time Travel is hard. You have to pick the right cave to sleep in, know which food stall to avoid so you don't get the plague, find the best deal on Togas, not get eaten by dinosaurs, all while making sure you adhere to all the local customs so you d...