April Update

Whew! The last two weeks have been dizzying!

 

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A millionaire

First, The Husband and I went to Las Vegas. We had won a trip there (three nights in a casino hotel, tickets to a show, a tour, some gambling money and a couple of free drinks) and it had reached the point of ‘use it or lose it.’ So we went. I know it seems silly for two people who don’t gamble and who drink sparingly to go to Las Vegas, but we had a blast. Our hotel was on the Fremont Experience (the downtown outdoor ‘mall’ that used to be Fremont Street) and we had more fun walking it – everything you can think of you can see along the Fremont Experience! We did gamble a little (we’re devils on the penny slots!) and over the entire trip lost a total of about $10 – not a bad entertainment charge for a couple of days. We did have a margarita at one of the outdoor bars, as well as a glass of wine in front of the room-sized fish tank at the Golden Nugget bar.

We went to the Mob Museum, planning to stay only an hour or so since neither one of us are that interested in the history of organized crime. We ended up staying most of the day Three stories of museum – it was fascinating! Next time we go I’ve determined I’m going to do the zip line that runs the entire length of the Fremont about five stories up, just under the metal mesh canopy, and I’m going to do the ‘lying down’ version, where you fly stretched out on your stomach, a la Superman.

Beth Hiram and me 1

The Husband and I with soon-to-be-Doctor Beth Hart, close friend and archaeological advisor for the new Rachel Petrie series

Then home for two days, and off again, this time to Atlanta for the annual international conference of the American Research Center in Egypt. This is a scholarly conference, with papers being delivered about such esoteric subjects as Theorizing Masculinity in Ancient Egypt and Breaking Rigor : A New Approach to Understanding Decomposition and Additions to the Corpus of Painted Votive Cloths from Deir El Bahri and Comments on Two Unpublished Funerary Cones as well as excavation reports from all over the country. It was fascinating, and the knowledge we gained alone would have been worth the trip even if we didn’t get to see all our wonderful Egyptological friends. Sometimes this is the only time when most of them are together, as they are from all over the world.

Hiram Salima me and Bob 2

The Husband and I with our dear friends Dr. Salima Ikram and Dr. Robert Ritner at the Michael C. Carlos Museum

After the papers every day there were parties and receptions and a lovely banquet buffet, including a wonderful reception at the Michael C. Carlos Museum at Emory University. They have a marvelous (albeit small) Egyptian collection and it is beautifully displayed. Unfortunately, the ancient artifacts gallery itself is small, making the objects difficult to see or contemplate when the room is packed with a large number of conferees, all talking enthusiastically. Including me. I would love to go back when the museum is empty.

This was a driving trip for us, which I love, but was not as pleasant as usual because of the rain. It poured. It gushed. At times it almost reached Biblical proportions, which made driving difficult, especially as so many drivers still drove as if it were dry, going at least 15-20 mph over the speed limit. I like to drive fast as much or more than the next person, but only on open roads in good weather. Not in the middle of a deluge on a crowded highway. Didn’t see any wrecks, though, so I guess all ended well.

 

Now I must get to work. Have to finish the Texas-set gothic novella I am doing for the World of Gothic serial-release anthology, and then must decide if I am going to start my new Rachel Petrie contract archaeologist series or write the next Flora Melkiot mystery, the idea for which came to me in the middle of the Fremont Experience in Las Vegas. A lot depends on the schedule of soon-to-be-doctor Beth Hart, my dear friend and technical advisor for the Petrie series.

 

Hope your spring has been safe and wonderful –