Thursday, April 21, 2011

traveling Crow #3,249,001,683

Crow has sent another postcard from Egypt in which he appears to be enjoying himself enormously. He's even taken to wearing one of the costumes he favored during the reign of Ramses I. There wasn't much room for writing on the card that seems to have been through a sandstorm or two on its way here except for:

My friend the Sphinx is a little irked about his nose having gone missing and has wondered aloud 'What is wrong with you people?'

I know you've been drinking my Remy Martin but under the circumstances you're forgiven so long as you purchase more. Bag of dates on the way and me too.


ps: I wonder if NYC will still look this good in 2500 years?

I always wanted to go to Egypt but along with so many places I'd prefer to go there at least 100 years ago before the tourists arrived. Wouldn't it be fine to be sailing up the Nile toward Karnak in 1923?


  1. I think I would have preferred to have been with Genghis Khan. Sacking and pillaging sounds like my kind of activity - Genghis couldn't be as bad as his image; after all his mother always called him Hun.

  2. Poor old sphinx! Up to Crow's postcard, I'd always thought that it was Napoleon's soldiers who blew off the sphinx's nose; however, I was inspired to look it up. According to Wikipedia, "The Egyptian Arab historian al-Maqrīzī, writing in the 15th century AD, attributes the loss of the nose to iconoclasm by Muhammad Sa'im al-Dahr, a Sufi Muslim from the khanqah of Sa'id al-Su'ada. In AD 1378, upon finding the Egyptian peasants making offerings to the Sphinx in the hope of increasing their harvest, Sa'im al-Dahr was so outraged that he destroyed the nose, and was hanged for vandalism."

    At least then, the Islamic authorities had some respect for artistic and architectural treasures. The Taliban would have given him a medal!

  3. I think this crow is great and I love the time travel...

  4. ol'buzzard - Genghis was definitely a guy you wouldn't want to have opposed but his history is fascinating. The movie Mongol, an excellent representation of his early life, led me to reading more about the empire he established 1000 years ago. Are you aware that 16 million asians are his direct descendants? That's a whole lot of raping and pillaging.

    francis - According to Thor Heyerdahl the early Muslim expansion to places as far away as the Maldives resulted in a large scale destruction which, had they been left in place, would have gone far to provide us with a clearer picture of the history of human civilization. We do know that Buddhism was all but wiped out in India. I'm not surprised to read Sa'im al-Dahr damaged the Sphinx (or had it done) but it's good to know there were people who recognized fanaticism.

    liberality - So true.

    kay - Crow's always been pretty loose and goes back a long way. One day I'll tell more of his stories.

  5. Hell, how many of us descended from Euros probably count Genghis as a distant ancestor. The Golden Horde was hefty as a garbage bag.

  6. Oh, I love those old photos of Karnak. I think it was an exciting time to be an archaeologist. Makes me think of a Poirot film I saw a few months ago. Did you know Agatha Christie's husband was an archaeologist and she supported hime andwent along on his expeditions. I think I secretly wished to be in her shoes. As maybe does Crow!

  7. randal - Considering who's been running things the last while one might easily imagine which of them possesses the genes.. or maybe Attilla's.

    marja-leena - My husband and I watched 'Death on the Nile' with Peter Ustinov as Poirot a couple of months ago. I think that's the one you mean with lots of 1960's stars. I did know that about Agatha Christie being married to an archeologist as did another mystery writer whose books my mother and I both enjoyed reading. She's Elizabeth Peters who wrote a series of books about the Victorian adventuress, Amelia Peabody.

  8. Great expressions on those two old friends. :)

    And very wise of Crow to know that his RM was going to a good cause!

  9. The Ustinov film was great. Actually, the film I was trying to recall was, I think, Murder in Mesopotamia with David Suchet, my favourite Poirot. Crow would love him, I think they have something in common the way they dress and walk!

  10. I Just checked out Elizabeth Peters, new to me - she looks like she may be trying to catch up to Agatha Christie's output of writings. Will have to see if I can find some of her books in the library, though I think there needs to be another one of me to read everything I want to read!

  11. oh gosh, sand in new york city?
    and truthfully, i bet there are mummies in the tunnels beneath the city.
    museums 2500 years from now will be displaying lost shopping carts. shopping carts are indestructable.

  12. Randal said:

    Hell, how many of us descended from Euros probably count Genghis as a distant ancestor.

    Sister Marie Louise, Principal of my grade school---definitely a descendent of Genghis Khan.

  13. cr - I'm glad you noticed. Sometimes the only thing worth saying is an eye roll.

    Crow is never less than generous :-)

    marja-leena - Thanks for telling me about David Suchet. I now have two of the his Poirot movies on the zip list. It's not quite netflix but it works eventually so hopefully we'll get to see them before autumn comes around again. Maybe Crow will be here to watch them with me.

    I know what you mean about finding time to read everything worth reading. I didn't realize that the first Amelia Peabody novel, the Crocodile on the Sandbank was published in 1975. I didn't read it and the ones immediately following until about 1993. Hopefully, it hasn't gone out of print in the meanwhile:

    Set in 1884, this is the first installment in what has become a beloved bestselling series. At thirty-two, strong-willed Amelia Peabody, a self-proclaimed spinster, decides to use her ample inheritance to indulge her passion, Egyptology. On her way to Egypt, Amelia encounters a young woman named Evelyn Barton-Forbes. The two become fast friends and travel on together, encountering mysteries, missing mummies, and Radcliffe Emerson, a dashing and opinionated archaeologist who doesn't need a woman's help -- or so he thinks.

    sera - I'll bet there are mummies in those tunnels too and everybody knows there are albino crocodiles.

    I'm thinking they'll also be displaying white plastic lawn chairs which are also imperishable.

    nunly - Glad to see you've returned and hope you're feeling in fine fettle. You've been missed.

    Sister Mary Louise, however, is likely not.

  14. It's Crow's excellent and unique taste in footwear that strikes me first in many of the postcards. Men in the West, in particular, seem to have dowdy taste in shoes. So little color other than the usual brown and black. Women have long understood what striking effect can be created with the colors and shapes of shoes. Crow, of course, has so much more background, experience, and good taste to draw upon, plus a boldness where his dress is concerned. Sharp, well turned out, eye catching, and always a personal statement made by an artist.

  15. steve - Crow told me about his pair of traditional Turkish boots. Their color and design are a lot more complex and beautiful than most of the shoes we see regularly and I look forward to making a better presentation when I see them for myself. You're right that men's shoes are pretty plain - except for the truly silly ones you see in sports stores. Crow is a sartorial master whose taste will never go out of style.

  16. susan, i always am tickled pink to see crow has made another appearance....and so dapper, with that wonderfully chilling "necklace" he's sporting that speaks something to my way of seeing things...always have been a wrathful dakini sort.

    i would love to join you so long ago--we can figure out a way to get back there again, you think? i do :)

    love his shoes, as always, the shoes speak to me...i apologize i am so late to come over and say hello but the usual...hoping you have had a lovely spring weekend for the holiday. and you are well too. xoxox

  17. linda - The dagger he's sporting is called a jambiya and is part of the ceremonial clothing worn by certain Arab men. Crow looks super cool wearing one, doesn't he? His shoes, a traditional style too, I'm really looking forward to getting a closer look at when he returns.

    I once lived next door to an old man who told me his house had been turned around so it's address was on a better class street. He told me people had much more time in the old days.


  18. Oh, what a marvelous card. Crow can really muster up a most excellent greeting while traveling about the world.

    I agree with you that it would have been lovely to visit Egypt around 1923 or so. If I concentrate really hard maybe I can come up with a good dream about it tonight!

    (One of my new Facebook friends is an Egyptian woman who is a teacher of English at Cairo University. Strange how we "met." I visited Yusuf Islam's (Cat Stevens) fb page around the time of Egypt's revolution and left a message saying I hoped he would write an anthem in honor of the people. My new friend clicked that she "liked" my comment, and I then clicked on her name to get to her page and sent a friend request. Was surprised when she accepted. We have been sending nice messages to one another since then.)

  19. lydia - Yes, Crow always dresses well and appropriately for the place and occasion. 1923 in Egypt would have been a perfect time for a visit. I hope you conjured the dream.

    One of the best things about internet is a story of meeting a new friend so far away it would have been impossible previously. I hope it continues.