Memoire of the world

The following document is a diary piece written by Fyki Spirits. Dated from 5510, it relates the explorer's Memoire day. Some smaller markings are scribbled here and there, seemingly more recent than the rest of the document.  
Today was the day.   I was nervous before, of course. I mean, who wouldn't be? The work of your adulthood. The memoire was four years in the making, drove me insane more than once. An entire book of experimentations.   Still, I suppose I wasn't quite as stressed as an outsider presenting for the first time. I mean, at least I grew up surrounded by researchers. I sort of knew what to expect.   The process had begun before, of course. My book had been read by several major researchers on the topic: some from the Tribes, some invited scholars. They had been reviewing that work for two dozes. Sometimes, I think they’ll be the only one to really, fully read the content of that work.   When I entered the auditorium, I was surprised to see it already a bit full. Some people I recognized as my friends, others not quite. In the end, I think half, or two thirds, of the people present were from other tribes.   I presented my work the best I could. A Memoire of the World is a pretty difficult ritual, compared to other scholarly presentations: you have two Rotations to describe what was at the center of your life for the past three to five years. You have to go deep enough for experts to see you are relevant, and to contextualize enough that even people new to the topics, like that person from another tribe you have a crush on, can understand what you did. And if you take too long, people will get bored and disappointed!   Anyway, I think things went alright. After that, of course, were the questions. The people who read the book were the ones asking the questions. They always do so, in a very specific order. I think they usually note down questions when reading the book, and then hope no one will ask before them.   That first question phase took about three Rotations. It was then followed by a few additional questions from the rest of the audience, though they were rather shy. After that, my surveyors hid in a small office next to the auditorium. Typically, they spend some time discussing together, providing constructive criticism to the book, and drinking a bit.   After yet another Rotation, they came back. I was accepted! I got congratulated on the seriousness of my work, on how well-written the whole thesis was, and everything. The reviewers spent a bit delivering each interesting speeches about the importance of modern-day field kylindrography. Finally, some documents were signed, and that was it: I was officially a member of the Field Methodologies and Inquiries Tribe. Which meant we could turn to te second part of the ritual: the celebration.   I know that the real important, administrative part of a Memoire of the World is the Book Defense part. Still: everyone knows that the actual ritual is the celebration. Some people will privatize a pub in the Surface of Merinos, others will import an ox cart worth of mead and wine in their tribe’s headquarters. Often, other substances or voyages to the spirit world are also involved.   I think we spent more than the cost of a Perrot’s wedding, or a small house, during that night. And most of it, we drank down. We started in the auditorium, obviously: we always do. Then, we migrated to the tribe’s headquarters: seemingly out of thin air, a few amphoras of corn ale had appeared in the the Common Room. As the night darkened, some of us decided to move to the surface.
  [The document has been ripped, and the rest is missing.]

Cover image: by Pouaseuille


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