Today the Greek Orthodox Church is celebrating the Angels and Archangels uniting the celestial and terrestrial realms according to (some sections of the) Christian faith. Angels can be both good and evil, like the news that the “angels” of ancient drama used to convey. It seems that etymologically at least, this is the primal function of angels: being messengers.
Somehow, I felt that today some messages will arrive. And indeed one came through facebook and one through email, a good and a bad breaking of news respectively…
Good news first: Today the Section Française d’Archéologie Soudanaise posted a video on YouTube taken from a drone flying from the dig house on Sai, over the Qalat Sai, the excavations of Vincent Francigny of the Meroitic necropolis beside the fortress, and back to the dig house. A finely coordinated flight, an angel’s-view I’d dare say, that constitutes a very good update for those familiar with the sites, and and excellent, insightful introduction for those who will first attain the magnificent antiquities of Sai Island. You can find the video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o8jcpfIaF6U
The bad news seem to expose all this beauty to the greatest risk: the flooding of the area of the Sokoot by the construction of the dam on Dal Cataract. The news sound like a nightmare for those of us who thought that the financial problems in the country, the region, the world have saved the natural and the cultural landstape of the Nubians. But on Tuesday the 3rd of November an agreement was signed in Riyadh between Sudan and Saudi Arabia, according to which the Saudis have committed to invest 1,7 billion US dollars for the construction of the three dams at Dal, Kajbar, and Shereik. You can follow these news from Sudan Tribune, but it is certain that many critical posts will appear soon on several platforms.