The Vine

Monday, July 05, 2004

Crimes Against the Past

This could go in the category of really unusual customer requests. They often start with "You may think this is a strange question..." but the really strange ones don't need to say this.

He was looking for a book about the meaning or vibrations of cemetary stones. "Hmmm," I said and pointed to books on spirit communication and the magical uses of stones. As I thought, none would be to the point of his quest.

As it turns out, the young man was in possession of a rock, part of an ancient burial cairn, from one of the most ancient cemeteries known, in the Sinai Penninsula between Egypt and Israel. He showed me said rock, and asked if I could tell the energies of objects. I declined to hold his stolen grave stone.

How to help. I suggested that the most proper thing to do would be to return it to the archaeological site he had visited those 10 years ago. He agreed, but maybe you can imagine, there is no mailing address and UPS has no idea. Then I put my brain on the front burner and in order, these are the things that steamed out: bury it at a Hebrew or Muslim cemetary here in TX (which we both decided was not the thing since the artifact predated both faiths), go to the Harry Ransom Center at UT and seek the advice of a curator, and then, duh, duh, D-OH!:

One of my good friends, ZZ, is the son of a woman who is a foremost archaeologists of the Mideast. In fact, when the Museum of Bagdad was looted at the beginning of the attack on Iraq, she was one of the world experts called in to assess the losses. ZZ told me, that before she went, she told him that she had wept for a week after hearing the news. That museum holds some of the most ancient keys to western civilization, some of which came from her digs, and most of those predate the big three warring religions. Something Skull and Bones would be interested in? But I digress.

The customer, P, will check with the Ransom Center. And I'll check out with someone of just one degree of separation as to how to get the stone home. Before he left I said I did want to hold it, after all. It did feel odd, old, but very energetic for something so old. I had never touched an ancient cemetary stone before, now I know how that feels. Unless it was HIS hooblajoobla that was on it, not the deads'.


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