Monday, October 02, 2023

Well my nose started running in the middle of the night and a sore throat started. And then I tested positive. Paxvolid rebound- apparently quite common. 

And now I am waiting to see if I infected Matt. Miserable.

Sunday, October 01, 2023

 Covid 19 is a terrible nuisance. So the day after I returned from my adventure I started feeling weird. On Thursday I had to drive up to Gilbert to do a survey. When I finished I had the option of going to some antique stores that Matt and I had gone to in either 2018 or 2019. Instead I drove home and went to bed.

The next morning I tested positive. That day was the worst day. At one point I had a fever of 101.6. Plus body aches, a head ache, coughing up gunk. The next day (Saturday) was also pretty bad. But then I started feeling better. By Wednesday I felt fairly normal. I never lost my sense of taste and smell.

I was still testing positive, although the line was getting paler and paler. Finally yesterday (Sept 30) I did two tests that were negative.

Sandy is also recovering and is still positive, but I have immunity from Covid for a while.

Anyways it was so nice to see Matt and do normal things. We went to Gay Pride and I was amazed at how few people I knew there. Today we went to a couple of antique stores. I'm still taking naps, I guess I am not at 100 percent.

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

The Big Adventure.

September 9

We drove to Phoenix and stayed at the Aloft Airport hotel (fancy!). We went to a Chinese restaurant for supper and I enjoyed the meal.

September 10

Our first flight was from Phoenix to Montreal. Air Canada. The seat in front of me was so close, my legs were jammed into the back of the seat.


Matt and Homer about to get onto the next flight.

We then boarded a huge plane (400 people) heading to Rome. I could not sleep and Matt only nodded off a little. I watched a movie (65) and 1.5 episodes of The Last of Us. 

September 11

Finally we arrived and then had to wait until a bus took us into the terminal. Then some pricey money changing and then a train to Rome. After getting off it was maybe 20 minutes to walk to the place we were staying, an Airbnb close to the Vatican.

With lovely antique furniture.

I had a nap. Then we had supper, I think I had a marghuerita pizza that seemed to be mostly cheese. The street we were staying on had several stores selling religious items.

Matt considering vestments.

Afterward we walked over to the Vatican and admired the fountains and the Egyptian obelisk. We also walked around the San Angelo Castle, very pretty.

A Vatican kiss.

September 12

We woke up late (10:30 AM). Things ensued. We got dressed and headed out. Matt had a list of things to see so we started. First stop, the Trevi Fountain. A tourist hotspot- way too many people. Difficult to concentrate on seeing it because you were worried about pickpockets (I was perhaps too worried about this, but I nagged Matt to put things in his front pocket). 

Trevi Fountain.

A while later we came across the Pantheon (and obelisk number 2). Cash line was much quicker to get inside. The building is amazing. Strange to see that it is a church with side altars and people buried inside.


After more walking around. My feet hurt. 12 miles.

September 13

We got up early and went to an indoor market. I bought pastries, green grapes, and plums.

Beautiful produce.

We stopped first at a small outdoor antique kiosk. Nothing I wanted. A very long walk took place to the Borghese Gardens. We could not get inside the museum, it was closed. Then we started walking some more, Matt found directions to another antique store. 

My feet were hurting so bad. I have plantar fasciatis in the heel of my right foot. Finally I asked, how much longer? It was either 20 or 40 minutes. A minor temper tantrum. We had a discussion. Matt likes to walk a lot. Me, not so much. So we cut short that walk and started back.

And then we came across the Trajan Market Museum and I insisted we go inside. Lots of sculptures and ruins, somewhat a maze to get to where you wanted to go. Matt really enjoyed seeing this.

Trajan's market place.

Trajan's column.

Afterward we walked back to the apartment. 12.5 miles.

September 14

We walked towards the Capitoline Museum. A church was open on the way and we stopped to go inside. There are churches everywhere in Rome and the ones we went inside were beautifully decorated.

The Capitoline is up a steep hill! The museum is filled with famous statues and mosaics and was not particularly crowded, so you could enjoy looking at things.  

Marcus Aurelius.

Sandwiches at the cafeteria (mine was a disgusting eggplant one). We went outside onto a terrace afterward and looking down Matt spotted archaeologists at work. I was jealous.

Then a hurried walk to the Colloseum, where Matt had bought a tour package (well worth it). We walked through this enormous building and I learned how nasty Roman parents took their children to watch public executions as an educational activity.


The took went to the top of Palatine Hill through the remnants of Domitian's palace, then down into the Forum, where we saw a number of buildings.

One of two arches.

We walked back and ate supper very close to the apartment. 9 miles

September 15

We walked to the train station and found it very confusing. We ended up waiting a couple of hours before catching the high-speed train (185 mph) to Naples. Then a taxi ride to the street where we walked to meet Genero, who let us into the next Airbnb.

That night pizza at a famous pizza place, where both locals and tourists eat. It was the best pizza of the trip. Afterward we walking along the sea shore. People were having a nice time strolling and stopping at the sidewalk cafes.

Pizza place.

September 16

60th birthday. We took the subway to the train station and the train station to Pompeii. There a taxi deliberately dropped us off at the wrong place and we missed the expensive tour that Matt had paid for. He was very angry.

We then headed into the city with a paper map. At the theater a woman tried to pickpocket Matt, who smashed her hand with his camera. I proceeded to play tour guide, based on the things I knew about the site from being obsessed every since I was a kid. We headed up the streets, often avoiding the crowds, stopping to go inside houses that were open. Beautiful frescoes and mosaics. Not many small things, the houses have been stripped of their furnishings which are in museums. 

At the amphitheater.

Chariot ruts.

Entrance mosaic featuring a guard dog.

Priapus weighing his enormous assets, I think this is in the House of the Vetiis.

I got to see a lot more of Pompeii than I would have with a tour. We ended at the House of Mysteries.

Then a fast standing-room-only train back to Naples.

We then went to the Naples Archaeological Museum. It is filled with the treasures from Pompeii, Herculaneum, neighboring towns. Again, so much but not crowded. The Villa of the Papyri room was closed, unfortunately.

Diana, from Pompeii.

Perseus freeing Andromeda.

Supper was a mistake- a horrible fettucine dish with a surly old lady waitress. But the birthday pastry was delicious.

Cream puff with whipped cream inside.

September 17

Subway to train station, and then to Herculaneum. It is obvious that there is less money being spent at this site. One house in particular- the graffiti was horrible, people scratching their names on 2000-year-old frescoes. Still remarkable to see things there.


Only a small portion of the site has been excavated- it is buried up to 80 feet in ash that has turned into tufa, a type of stone. And then the modern town is built on top. You can see places at the edges with walls sticking out and tunnels from the old days. If only I was a billionaire...

Homer at Herculaneum.

We then took the train back to Naples and then another train back to Rome, where we walked to the third Airbnb, this one on the fourth floor.

After a nap we got ready for dinner and Matt said, "Put on a nice shirt," and I did. We walked down a street towards a spot where you could see Corinthian columns from Roman days that had been re-used for a Church, and then Matt got down on his knee and proposed. I cried a little (he expected more). It was a huge surprise.

I said yes.

The fiancee.

We had a nice supper- weird that I cannot remember what I ordered except I did have a glass of red wine.

September 18

We took the subway and then there was a mad dash to get to the meeting spot of the tour for the Vatican Museum. Crowded. So much art. Overwhelming. Some of the works are the ones you study in art history.

Laocoon and His Sons.

Many of the rooms were the former living places of Popes and were elaborately decorated.

Fancy frescoes.

My favorite rooms you could not go in, had many sculptures of animals. The tour guide made a big deal about being quiet in the Sistine Chapel, but it was very noisy and crowded and difficult to appreciate the Michelangelo frescoes.

By the time we were done, I was very hungry and demanded we eat in the Vatican cafeteria. It was the second best meal of the trip. I had pasta salad and fresh green beans, Matt had a mac N cheese with tomato sauce and the green beans. The bread was very good and there was a tiny Crossaint with nutella. 


We took the subway back. After a nap we wandered into another church and then had a last meal at a touristy restaurant. 

September 19

The next morning we were up at 2 AM, the taxi arrived at 3 AM and whisked up to the airport.

Waiting for the taxi.

They three flights- Rome to Zurich, Zurich to Chicago, and Chicago to Phoenix. Then Matt drove us home to Tucson and dropped me off. SO TIRED. 

The next day I slept in weird ways, waking at strange times, my body feeling strange. On Thursday I drove up to Gilbert to do a survey and felt weird, I thought maybe I had a cold. I took two Covid tests- negative.

But on Friday morning I felt horrible and took another test. SIGH. The next 24 hours were miserable- a fever of 101.6, body aches, coughs, etc. 


I gave it to Sandy, who experienced worse symptoms. Somehow Matt escaped catching it. On one of the flights I took off my mask for a while. Or at the Chicago airport, packed with people. Who knows. I'm waiting for the tests to stop being positive.

Saturday, September 09, 2023

We headed north to Flagstaff so I could present a paper about the first ice cream parlor in Tucson at a conference. People liked the paper, which had nothing to do with archaeology.

When Matt picked me up we drove to the top of Snow Bowl and wandered around the slope. Buddy-boo got to run around and smell things. It was pretty and green (and very cool up north).

Flower and butterfly.

The next day we got up early and drove north to see the big hole in the ground, the Grand Canyon. On the way there Matt posed with a metal bear.

Matt and bear.

I had just been to the Grand Canyon with my brother a month ago. This time we went very early and there were less people. Buddy-boo was not impressed. Actually Matt agreed, it is just a big hole.

Homer, Matt, and Buddy-boo (Gandalf).

After lunch I suggested we go to Walnut Canyon. A thousand years ago Native Americans lived along the cliffs, building small pueblos. Matt liked that a lot more than the grand canyon. It started lightning and thundering and the climb back up the steps was no fun, don't touch the metal rails so you don't get killed and don't have a heart attack because of the elevation and not being used to climb up a 100 steps.

Walnut canyon.

I did a survey at Benson along Interstate 10 and at one point a mesquite thorn got into my leg. I noticed it in Flagstaff but we couldn't get it out. It got infected and I went to the doctor who gave me pills. Eight days later I squeezed and out it popped. Gross. It was huge.


Sandy moved back from Australia and is staying with me. We went to Rosa's to celebrate. I had the usual.

Sandy and Matt.

Last night Sandy went to Chaiteria for food and when he got back Clyde really, really wanted some of it.

Sandy and Clyde.

This morning we did yard work. And now I am waiting for Matt to show up as we start our adventure.



Tuesday, August 08, 2023

It is hot. Days and days of 110+. But I have been out surveying and monitoring.

At one site along the Interstate I re-recorded an early 1900s homestead. Lots of pretty decorated ceramics. We will be going back to that site sometime soon.

Nice sherds.

At a monitoring project the workers found the top of a pit feature with lots of bottles, decorated ceramics, a frypan, and a bone-handled toothbrush. I even got to dig for a few minutes. The workers had a lot of fun pulling the items out until they reached the level they needed to be at. 

Homer digging.

I decided to make fig preserves. I went to the Presidio Museum and picked three pounds of figs. The tree is doing great. A fig tree has been in the yard there since at least the 1880s.

Fig tree.

Three pounds.

I chopped the figs, added about 1 1/2 cups of sugar, and the juice of two lemons. I ended up with five jars and a little left over that I enjoyed. One jar to Sarah, two for the Museum silent auction, and one to go to Bradley.

Fig preserves.

On Sunday, Matt and I went to the Barbie movie. It was great. I felt very emotional at the end. I could see why conservatives/Republicans hated it. Patriarchy! It will be the topic of  many, any student papers in the future. 

Men in Pink.

Monday, July 31, 2023

Post 2,959. Twenty years later, how does time go by so fast? I don't post as much as I used to, and mostly use my blog to keep track of major events in my life. Having a blog has allowed me to make life-long friends, see new places, and experience new things. Who knows what will happen in the next 20 years?

Sunday, July 30, 2023

It has been hellishly hot this summer, after such a nice spring. Many days of over 110 degree heat. Finally the monsoon rains have started.

First real rain.

One weekend day Matt and I went up to the top of Mount Lemmon for a picnic. It was 101 at the base of the mountain and 81 at the top. Such a nice couple of hours.

Cool dudes.

Mostly spending my days at work watching trenches being dug. Or when I am at the office making changes to appease the museum people. Exactly what elevation is that street downtown?

Last week I did a survey and documented a historic home site. Lots of pretty ceramics. Definitely will be doing further work there.

Many varieties of 1880s-1900s ceramics.

This is me at around 5:30 AM, sitting on my bucket, waiting for the guys to start working in the trench.

The splotch on the shirt is from when the workmen dropped asphalt on a puddle and it splashed me.

Yesterday I went to the Presidio museum and picked figs. The tree is enormous now.

Fig tree.

Three pounds figs (9 cups), about 2 cups sugar, juice of two lemons, zest of one lemon, and a splash of vanilla, and voila! You have fig preserved.

Figs before cooking.

What else? The presidential election is how many months away? 16. So sick of it already.


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