Would you recognize this as the portrait of an indigenous American woman? No?
But not for lack of trying — on the part of Christopher Columbus. There he was, three ships and all, looking for India — and he found us instead.
Although he didn’t know it, there being no road signs or GPS back in 1492; and so he solved the riddle of an unknown land to his own satisfaction, as recorded in this charmer of a poem by Ramon Montaigne:
Columbus sailed the ocean blue…
Columbus sailed the ocean blue
Back in 1492.
He sailed across and spotted land,
A beach, and people on the sand.
He called them Indians because
He had no idea where he was,
India was just a guess.
When in doubt, declare success.
A philosophy, by the way, which I find immensely appealing! How about you?