National Geographic : 2003 Sep
C NM COVERIN G ETHENT W ORLD WINGED MUMMY OF PERU Working the Room Sometimes it's hard to get a view from the top In a small room in a small museum in the small town of Ica, Peru, Ira Block had a big problem. He had been assigned to photograph a 1,300-year-old mummy bundle. But the bundle weighed some 200 pounds and wasn't easily moved. Ira figured he could position himself above the object to shoot it, and planned to buy two ladders and a board to lay across them to make a platform. Next problem: There were no ladders for sale in Ica. "People build their own ladders there," he says. "I thought, two homemade ladders with me lying on a board between them? And if I fall, I destroy a rare ancient mummy?" Luckily a local man was soon found to install some sturdy scaffolding. Ira (below) appreci ated the support.