Week 31 January - 2 February 2012
There we are again in Cairo, after an absence of two years due to the revolution in Egypt which made work in 2011 impossible. Field director Maarten Raven and his deputy Christian Greco arrived on the 31st, and the next day visited the offices of the Ministry of Antiquities in order to sign the contract for a continuation of our work at Saqqara. We were helped very efficiently by the new head of the department of foreign missions, and spent the rest of the day in talks with Kim Duistermaat, the director of the Dutch-Flemish Institute in Cairo (always our base while we are staying in Cairo), and with the architect Nicholas Warner, who has been responsible for the overall consolidation of our site over the past ten years. Bit by bit we received the news of everything that has happened here during (and after) the revolution, a process that is still going on and will take many more years to come to a new balance. Not all news is pleasant, and Egypt has clearly become a different country.