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This and That

Just a quickie this evening. I'm packing tonight to catch the train to Scotland in the morning. I give my paper here at Leeds at 11:15, then need to run back, drag my suitcase down three flights of stairs, drag it a block to the registration desk, and turn in my key. Then I'm free to call a cab and get to the train station. (Doubtless you hear the note of 50lb-suitcase-bitterness in my tone this evening.)

Erin gave her presentation today so tomorrow she'll get to enjoy the last day of the conference before she heads off to Scotland to meet Elizabeth, an old high school friend of hers. While they are off in the highlands, I'll be at the Early Book Society Conference at St. Andrews in Scotland.

Today I've been noticing differences between the UK and the US. The biggest I have to say, is the amount of toast they burn here. Now I don't mean they scorch it till it's black, no, I'm talking flames. See the pic below of all the medievalists being evacuated this morning during breakfast because of burning toast. The last time I was here, I saw perhaps a half dozen toast fires.

I was caught being an American at the store. I bought my items and kept waiting for them to put it in a sack. And they kept waiting for me to pick up my items and go. There is no free sack, and the only sack for sale was huge. So I just had to juggle my little handful of items back to the dorm in my hands. Silly of me. I have two sacks already. Just didn't think to bring them.

Best Thing— Archaeologists Presentation on Richard III

Was very fortunate to get to hear the Archaeologists and the team of people who worked on the Richard III dig. They gave presentations this evening. It's all so serendipidous. The little bit of ground that they had permission to dig up (the parking lot) turned out to be the right spot to go looking for Richard. The lead archaeologist had emphatically said there was no way they would find him, that he'd eat his hat if they did. The crew baked him a cake shaped like a hat after the discovery was confirmed. They've also just recently found the battlefield where he died, and a bit of a gilded sword and a boar badge (his heraldic device), so they have a much better idea where he was killed.

Best medieval quotes from papers I heard today:

"...then took Reynaude the chess board and smote Berthelot upon his head...." (From Caxton's The Foure Sonnes of Aymon)

"Many hondyn maken lyht werke." --Many hands make light work (From a presentation on medieval proverbs.)

Pretty Pics:

Click on the thumbnails to see a larger version and enter a slideshow of the larger versions.

Medievalists Flee Burning Toast
Medievalists Flee Burning Toast
Yes, the toaster in the refectory kitchen started to burn a piece of toast this morning and we were evacuated from the building, while black smoke roiled from the kitchen.
No, we don't have bags
No, we don't have bags
I bought a few supplies at the campus store, but unwisely did not bring a bag with me. I could of course buy a HUGE bag for 20p, but no, there are no free bags.
Post Marquee
Posh Marquee
This is one of those plastic marquee tents that you rent. But they've draped the ceiling and the walls with fabric and hung chandeleers. It just feels posh.
Windows of Poshness
Windows of Poshness
And they swagged back the curtains along one wall. That's my lunch sack on the table by the window. I sat there over lunch proofreading my paper for tomorrow.
Loud Band
Loud Band
As we walked past on the way to a session tonight, what should appear but a loud band complete with hurdy gurdy, rauch fifes, schaums, viol de gamba, and bagpipes.