BunniHoTep and Ptah

Once upon a time BunniHotep was walking on Temple Row and came across Ptah. Ptah was staring at a half carved obelisk with a chisel in his hand and a puzzled look.

“What’s wrong, Ptah?” asked BunniHotep because something was quite obviously very wrong. Ptah usually looked very happy when he was going about his crafting tasks. It was his job to make and design all the art in the Temples. He had just finished Osiris’s lotus columns so this was very strange.

“I’m stuck,” he said with a sad voice. “I never get stuck and right in the middle of this obelisk too. I have to finish it and I have no idea how. My inspiration just flew away like that ibis there.” He added sadly. “That never happens to me. I have no idea what to write.” He looked even more dejected. Ptah was a god of few words so he had to be upset if he was going on this way. He saved his words for his work.

BunniHoTep decided she needed to shake Ptah’s lost inspiration loose. He had done a lot for her. He had spent a long time crouched down in rabbit-sized tunnels in her Temple carving and painting beautiful scenes. That had to have given him very big amounts of back pain and head bumps.  She had to help if just as a thank you for all his hard work.

“How did you get the idea for this obelisk in the first place?” she asked quietly.

“I don’t remember! It’s all gone.” Ptah was almost whining in frustration and this would never do. Gods do not whine!

BunniHoTep made an executive decision and grabbed Ptah’s arm with both her paws and tugged. “Let’s go for a walk. You need to get away from here.” She guided him off Temple Row. She thought Temple Row might be part of the problem. He rarely left it. How can you get an idea if you never go out?

So she walked him down to the docks on the Nile and they sat down and watched Ammit catch frogs for dinner. This aspect of her friendship with Ammit was a little hard to stomach but one makes allowances for friend’s oddities and it might help Ptah. They watched the ibises come and go from their nests, feeding their chicks. They watched the dragonflies buzz back and forth, their blues and oranges flashing brightly in the sun. She watched Ptah start to relax but he still had a sad expression on his face. So she tugged on him again and they continued on their walk.

She decided to walk him thru the Palace gardens, maybe that would help. They walked among the date palms and along the papyrus and lotus pools. They looked at the minnows darting back and forth catching insects for their suppers. They watched a vulture circle around over the desert in the distance. “He looks like he hasn’t a care in the world,” Ptah sighed.

“No, he looks like he’s found dinner,” BunniHotep said and hoped it was no one she knew but Ptah was seeming a bit brighter. “When was the last time you did something besides work for one of us?” She asked Ptah quietly.

“I don’t remember. Everyone keeps me so busy and I hate to say no.”

“Well, let’s make a bargain. Once a week we’ll take a walk off Temple Row. You don’t even have to speak to me when we walk, just be.” They kept walking and BunniHoTep smiled to herself at the small joke she had made. Thoth had made the rabbit hieroglyph the word “Be” and Ptah was too wound up to even remember.

“Let’s go watch the sunset over the Sphinxes. This time of year it goes right down the row of them and I like to watch it and then we can have supper.” Ptah nodded and they went and sat on the steps at the end of the row for their private show from Ra.

“You know something BunniHoTep? You gave me a big present. I think I can go back there tomorrow I know how to finish it. I think I’ll sketch it out tonight on papyrus so I won’t lose it but I know what to do now.” Ptah was very relaxed and smiling a bit now. He leaned back on his elbows and just watched to sun set.

Then the two friends got up and walked companionably back to Temple Row.