There is no patina upon my city. Nothing to surround it and protect it. Most old cities enjoy a certain shine, a glossy layer of existing families and historical stoops which exist to protect, to cleanse and to share in an appropriate way. They do the dirty work in the open light of everyday tourist who neither have the time nor the inclination to delve below the surface they are provided by these protectors, these saints of all things destined to be considered the truth.
My city doesn't have any such service, any such museum staffed by educated and trained professionals who have an ever looking eye towards those dirty little secrets. I suppose we have a few, mostly superficial and in various stages of support or validly. Those secrets that are the dirt in the mud on a rainy day at the bottom of the dingiest alley go unprotected or remembered. My city has long been exposed to the harshness of an overbearing sunlight that decays the strongest structure, the best paved streets and the strongest of individuals. There are no societies willing to take broom and pan to dust, no historical guidance to ease and learn from the mistakes of the past.
Oh, we have our share of strong towers headed into the sky. We have beautiful mansions and hovels barely more than a cardboard box. We have a river without water but bridges which span them, often unconsidered by the most inquisitive of commuters or pilgrims from afar. We have trees for parks, though mostly dead or dying, you see, our grass is brown.
We have been here for thousands of years, with nothing to show. That's because its all blown away or laying in piles of dust pounded by wind and baked in the oven of time. This is my city, there is beauty in its decay and honor in its hardness to accept. This is my city; the city with no patina.
a world building exercise offered as mealy amusement.
Edit Note: Upon a review by a reader, who I agreed with totally and confess laziness to choosing the word ugliness. I strike that and substitute and insert 'decay'. Thanks for pointing out my error.