On February 28, I officially launched Silver Locket Secrets at The Tea Lounge in London Ont. A huge thank you to everyone who came out and for those who couldn’t make it, enjoy the recording of my reading here!
This Thursday my first book launch will be held at The Tea Lounge in London, Ontario from 7-9pm. There will be a reading at 7:30 pm and everyone is invited.
Tickets are free and can be ordered at Eventbrite, which will help myself and Michelle at the Tea Lounge to know how many people we are expecting.
As I was making coffee this morning at work, I was exclaiming to a colleague how much I love coffee – It’s a lot. We were discussing how all coffee is good, even bad coffee is better than no coffee at all, and I was reminded of the worst cup of coffee I had ever tasted.
The worst cup of coffee ever:
A few years ago, when I was living up in Northwestern Ontario, I was driving between my then home, Fort Frances, and the small city of Kenora (even further to the north). I stopped at a small roadside community along the highway for a cup of coffee for the road. I won’t say which community, but there are not that many. I went into their only store and came out with some snacks and a cup of coffee.
Unfortunately, I didn’t take a sip until I was on the road again – it was awful.
So awful that I put it in my cupholder and didn’t even absentmindedly attempt to drink from it for the remainder of the trip.
It tasted like someone had made coffee a week earlier, then the grinds had gone mouldy, and they brewed another pot with them. Then two days later I came along.
Either that or they ran out of coffee and just used dirt.
Now for a very different story.
The best cup of coffee ever:
As an undergraduate student in archaeology, I spent the summer between my 3rd and 4th year in Jordan. On the way there, six friends and I made a side trip to Egypt. Our return flights to Cairo were an add-on to our main flights to Jordan and were with Royal Jordanian Airlines.
The flight from Amman, Jordan to Cairo, Egypt is a short flight, but they still fed us lunch; part of that lunch was the most heaven-like, velvety coffee I have ever tasted.
Only myself and one other in my group, Susie, had the coffee, and we spent the next week and a half reliving that coffee. Telling the others about it, and dreaming of the return flight to Amman when we would once again get to taste the most perfect cup of coffee in the world.
Sadly, when the return coffee was finally acquired – seven cups, one for each of us…
It was not the same!
We were so disappointed! The best we can figure is that someone important had been on that first flight, and they had brought out the good stuff. That or the attendants on this second flight did not have the magic touch of the first.
So, the story of the best coffee ever ends on a sad note; I will likely never taste that coffee again…
But I can still hope that one day we will cross paths.
What is the Wandering Museum Consultant?
Short Answer: A crazy idea.
Proper Answer: An experienced museum professional wandering around the world, and spending time at a variety of museums offering my services as a volunteer consultant. Throughout, I will be blogging about each museum, the region/country and the project itself.
The purpose of the Wandering Museum Consultant is two-fold:
1) The museums will benefit from:
- Extra help from an experienced museum professional
- Exposure to non traditional markets through my blog
2) I will benefit:
- Experience in different types of museums and in different countries
- Develop a network (perhaps connect those I work with with each other as well)
- Meaningful travel
I have seven years experience working in museums, primarily in Canada, but also in the UK. I have had the opportunity to work in small museums, where I have been able to develop skills in many different areas, including education programming and delivery, collections management and research, exhibition research and design, volunteer management and museum governance. In October 2012 I was honoured with an Ontario Museum Association’ Promising Leadership Award of Excellence for my body of work. Please check out my C.V. for more on my experience and accomplishments.
Currently, I am putting together an initial short term Wandering Museum Consultant program for this summer (a bit of a trial run). I will be spending the summer in Europe, and I am looking for 3 more 2 week placements in the UK or Europe. I am doing these placements on a volunteer basis, however, I greatly appreciate a donation of housing where I go (this does not need to be private accommodation, I am perfectly happy to be in spare rooms, etc.).
June 3 – 13: Vindolanda Charitable Trust, UK
June 16 – 27: Dublin, Ireland (Museums TBC)
July 7 – 18: ?
July 21 – August 1: ?
If you are interested in hosting me at your museum, please contact me at email@example.com
The Top 5 Reasons why I Love Museums
1) Artefacts: Handling, Preservation and Conservation
I’m first and foremost an archaeologist, and because of this I actually think a Saturday afternoon spent cataloguing and photographing an interesting archaeological collection is great fun to be had. ;P I may be unique in this.
However, there has been a lot of talk bouncing around the museum world lately about whether a museum needs a collection to be a ‘Museum.’ Whereas, I do think there are valid examples of instances where a collection isn’t necessary; I do think that the element of authenticity found in real artefacts is unbeatable.
2) Environment: The meeting of like minded people
The Best place to find other people who like museums, art, culture, history, heritage, etc. is to work at, volunteer for, or just hang around at museums!
3) Learning: Fueling our life long curiosities
I love learning new things, and it’s almost impossible to visit a museum and not learn.
4) Heritage: Housing and interpreting our collective Cultures
Museums offer visual essays of our collective cultures (Like a real life Pinterest!). Visitors can explore a cross-section of artefacts and images that illustrate the history of a place, people, or culture. (However, It is important to note that the stories told are usually those the local populations want to be told. Museums often avoid conflict and can be used as propaganda – the latter I do not like at all.)
5) Commentary: The past can illustrate the Present and inform the future
I especially enjoy exhibitions that have a good thought out and illustrated thesis. I find these kinds of exhibitions are rare, but when they are successful, they have the power to make social commentary, offer new interpretations of past cultures and events, and can help others to understand just why the past is worth knowing.