Claudia and I are both sick, and the baby too.
It's a cough, although it seems to take the three of us differently. Jacob has a perpetually runny nose and is cranky and miserable, very different from his usual sweet self. Claudia has a shallow cough and is very tired. I have a nasty convulsive hacking thing, with strange night sweats. Eh, you don't want to know. We're just sick.
I have posts in mind about election violence in Armenia (three dead so far, two bombings, one shootout at high noon in the holy city on Easter Sunday), about Lake Sevan, maybe about MRIs (they are, you should not be surprised to hear, Armenian).
But first I think something for Carlos and Luke:
"At about this time  there appeared at the Court of the Shah... that Englishman... called Sir Anthony Sherley. He gave himself out as a cousin of the Scottish King James, saying that all the Kings of Christendom had recognized him as such and had now empowered him as their ambassador to treat with the King of Persia, who should make a confederacy with them in order to wage war against the Turk, who was indeed the common enemy of them all."
[None of the foregoing was true, BTW. Sherley aka Shirley was one of those wild man adventurers that the Elizabethan period just threw up in droves. He had travelled to Persia on a whim when a job in Italy didn't pan out.]
"Now this Christian gentleman had by chance arrived in the very nick of time, for the King of Persia was then himself preparing to send an ambassador with many gifts to the King of Spain, by way of the Portuguese Indies. Sir Anthony, however, brought it to the knowledge of the Shah that there were, besides his Catholic Majesty of Spain, many other Christian kings in Europe and the West, who being most powerful monarchs would willingly join him against the Turk: hence it would now be proper to send with his ambassador letters and presents to each of these other kings. Sir Anthony succeeded so well in setting forth this matter that the Shah was satisfied to do as he advised, and gave orders forthwith that arrangements for these embassies should be set on foot, proposing that Sir Anthony should accompany his envoy the Persian ambassador...
"Now in coming to Persia Sir Anthony had made his voyage through Greece (and the Ottoman Empire) in the dress of a Turk, being cognizant of the Turkish language, but it was not possible or advisable for him to seek a return home by that route. On the other hand, the way by India would demand too long a sea journey, and it was in consequence determined that the voyage of the present embassy should be taken through Tartary and Muscovy."
Yah, that's right -- they decided to travel from Isfahan to Seville via the Arctic Ocean.
I can post more, but I wonder if the folks who'd be most interested are the ones who know this story already. Also, I have an excerpt from the 1926 translation, which takes them only as far as Moscow. If anyone has access to the complete account...?
Okay, to bed with me.