New York, Las Vegas, Escondido, Atlantis, Pluto, Planet Ten, The Fourth Realm: it's been a busy few weeks of traveling and it's good to be home. Some things I learned on the road:
1. The New York Public Library on 42nd Street - the one with the two lions out front - is not the place to do any serious work. You need the Manhattan Central Branch right across the street where there are no Italian tourists taking pictures of themselves in front of the card catalogs.
2. Three days of rich, starchy Vegas food + high desert temperatures + no water = serious gut troubles.
3. Armenia was the first Christian nation, not Rome. Also, when Constantine finally did declare Rome a Christian nation, he put an image of Jesus on the coins based on verbally handed down descriptions of the guy - coins which are currently sold in the antiquities store in the Venetian Hotel.
4. For any left-handed writers out there who really want to use a fountain pen but are sick of driving the nib into the paper and losing all ink flow, I suggest trying out an Oblique Medium nib. I do not, however, suggest trying this at the Mont Blanc store unless you have the money to purchase one because you will only walk away looking over your shoulder longingly with a single tear drop sliding down your cheek.
5. Express Checkout is a way for the hotel to screw you when you are in a rush to leave and aren't watching your back. Constant vigilance is required when traveling through the lands of the Sand People!