Early in 2002, the Palazzo Grassi, an exhibit venue in Venice, Italy, began arranging a major exhibit of Egyptian artifacts titled I Faraoni (The Pharaohs), borrowing more than 300 objects from 32 institutions worldwide. The Museum loaned several works to the exhibit, and their transport to that venue became an epic journey.
We had arranged for the artifacts to fly to Italy on a combination passenger/cargo jet so that I, as the courier, could travel with them. Unfortunately, one of the four containers of crates could not be loaded onto the jet, despite massive efforts that delayed the flight (and everyone on it) for two hours. The other three pallets and I arrived in Milan, only to discover that our customs papers were now void and had to be completely redone, which meant we were trapped in customs for eight hours. The fourth pallet did not arrive for another 36 hours, necessitating an all-night truck ride to Maghera, the port for Venice.
Lynn Grant has a degree in archaeological conservation from the Institute of Archaeology at the University of London. She joined UPM’s Conservation Laboratory in 1988, as conservator for loans and traveling exhibits. Before that, she worked as a conservator in Canada, England, and Hong Kong, and conducted on-site field conservation in Italy, Greece, Turkeys, Jordan, and Honduras.