Yep, that’s right. I got to shake hands with Donald Johanson (premier paleontologist, discoverer of the fossils of Lucy the Australopithecus) while visiting the Museum of Prehistory in Les Eyzies-de-Tayac. It’s a world-renowned museum for paleontology located right down the street from where Monsieur Magnon first discovered Cro Magnon fossils back in 1870. Anyway, we were walking into the museum just past an exhibit of plaster casts of Lucy’s fossils. In the distance I heard a familiar voice. I turned to Megan and said, “Isn’t that cool. They have a recording of Donald Johanson playing near the display.” I looked around the corner to see what was on display, and there was Donald Johanson with a tour group. A woman in the group encouraged me to hang around and talk to him, maybe get an autograph. So I went up to him and introduced myself. He laughed at how I recognized his voice (I’ve seen videos he’s narrated dozens of times). Turns out he’s coming to Santa Barbara in August to work on a new book, “Lucy’s Legacy,” or something like that. He’s working on organizing a symposium with the SB Museum of Natural History as well. Maybe we’ll meet up again. :^)
All of my students should start singing the “Early Humans Song” at this time!