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Synd-Ra-La: The Egyptian Princess
Legend tells of a time in Egypt when a young girl named Synd-Ra-La became Queen of Egypt. Few people know that she was queen during the time when Nefertiti vanished from historical record to when the next ruler stepped in. This is the story of that girl.
Long ago, an Egyptian scribe had need of a mother for his child, named Synd-Ra-La, after the great god of the sun. He chose the name because he believed that it would bring her luck in life. He was both right and wrong. He found a woman who had need of money, and took her in. The two fell in love, and married. This new mother had two daughters, Nuteum, and Bastetmun. They were also named after gods, with the belief that it would bring protection and good luck. Synd-Ra-La had never really liked her new sisters. They ordered her to polish the amulets and the small statues, get the sand out of the bread and to harvest the crop and a myriad of other chores. Synd-Ra-La hadn’t minded, because she had grown up with her father working hard each day. After her father had passed into the west, as the Egyptians say, her mother and sisters worked her harder than ever.
Contrary to the writing of the scribes, Synd-Ra-La had not made friends out of rats, but the scarab beetles that she was often ordered to take out of the house. Anyway, there was word of Rameses holding a celebration of some sort in the Temple Luxor. Nuteum and Bastetmun were very excited and quickly went to work on new wigs and golden bands. Of course they were rubbish, but their mother never told them otherwise. Synd-Ra-La was also excited for the celebration. After asking if she could attend with her sisters, her mother replied by telling her that she needed to make new amulets, harvest a bigger crop and make herself a new dress before she could go. Synd-Ra-La worked as hard as she could hoping that she could go to Rameses celebration.
When the day came, Synd-Ra-La’s mother told her that she had neglected to remove sufficient sand from the bread and therefore had to stay home. Synd-Ra-La was heartbroken. In the midst of her crying and wishing, one of the amulets stirred. To the young girl’s amazement, Tawaret burst out of the stone sculpture and in front of Synd-Ra-La.
“Goodness me, that was exciting!” said the goddess. “Oh, gracious my dear child! Why aren’t you at the Temple of Luxor? And more importantly, what are you wearing?” she said addressing the rags Synd-Ra-La had on.
The young girl started to cry again. “My mother said for me to stay, and I’ve had these rags for the past dynasty!”
Tarwaret patted her shoulder. “There, there my little one. I could help.”
“You can?” Synd-Ra-La asked as she looked at the goddess through bleary eyes.
“Well, the customary payment is a few mummified cats and monkeys for a wish or two, but I suppose I could make an exception.” She waved her hands and poof! A hippopotamus appeared. Synd-Ra-La was stunned. “Well, hop on!” Tawaret exclaimed. Synd-Ra-La walked toward the fat creature, but before she could get on it, Tawaret squealed. “Oh goodness me! We can’t have you going in that!” She waved her hands again, and Synd-Ra-La’s rags turned into a beautiful, shining robe of white. The girl smiled at the goddess. “Oh my! You remind me of myself a few thousand years ago.” As the hippo swam away down the Nile, Tawaret yelled something about sunset.
Synd-Ra-La arrived at the ball just in time to see Bastetmun trying to dance with Rameses. “Tut, tut!” the king said. “Our boy just doesn’t want to enjoy himself, does he?”
“His name is Ramases. Tut died a while ago.” The queen said matter of factly.
“Ah yes, tragic.” The king said. Ramases saw Synd-Ra-La enter, and walked immediately towards her. Bastetmun missed tackling the prince and crashed instead into Nuteum. Ramases took Synd-Ra-La’s hand and they danced.
The two sat down after several hours. “I have met every young maiden in Egypt, but you are not like them. You strike me more as a humble, yet strong young–hey! Wait a second!” he yelled as Synd-Ra-La started running. The sun was setting, and she realized what would happen. Her beautiful white robe was becoming brown, and developing holes. The magic was wearing off! She ran and ran, right into Nuteum. Synd-Ra-La stood up and sprinted out of the Temple and had just run through the door to her home when her robe was, once again, her old rags.
Rameses picked up the sandal. It was all he could find of the glorious being that had been there only moments ago. He walked away, ignoring the protests of Nuteum and Bastetmun. After pondering the situation, he gathered the guard and set out the next morning to find the young woman whom he had danced with the night before. He put to sandal on every maidens’ foot, but none had fit. Their foot was either sticking off of the wooden shoe, or not reaching the end. At last, he came to the house of Synd-Ra-La. Her two sisters had rushed to greet Rameses and fought over who would put the sandal on first. Neither’s foot could fit on the sandal. Rameses was about to give up hope when he heard a voice from inside a cellar. “Mother! Nuteum! Bastetmun! You better let me out or I will make my scarabs come back!” Rameses opened the door, and there was Synd-Ra-La, hand frozen in midair, about to hit the door. He took her into the room with her sisters and put the sandal on her foot. It was a perfect fit. Synd-Ra-La was glowing with pride and happiness as she and Ramases rode off on a camel, towards the Temple of Luxor.
And thus concludes this tale of how Synd-Ra-La became queen of Egypt.