mercoledì, agosto 03, 2005

fallen off the face of the earth for a month

admittedly, i suck at keeping up with this email thing when i'm in italy.=

there are two digging days left before season is over an we fill all the holes back in. i've been digging in the shrine, the stables and the sidewalk of the vicolo di narciso, the shady back street of our insula (insula=3Dcity block). claire of the many trenches again. my first year of supervising i was overseeing four trenches by the end of the dig, so three is no problem. heh. right.

the entire first week and then a little bit more was dedicated to the removal of backfill from last year in the shrine. pat, my predecessor in the excavation of the space known as the shrine, had all but finished in the area and had created a pretty substantial hole in the ground which we had to recreate to get down to the remaining ancient in situ stuff. so the archaeology only really started to happen sometime in the middle of the second week. so then in the third week, we opened the second little room in the back of the stables, an adjoining building to the shrine. (ok, i realize that little of this makes any sense to anyone other than the people that have been on the dig, but you come up with a better way to talk about what i'm doing without a power point presentation)

the other... interesting.... development of the summer is what i will refer to as the darren debacle, both for it's accuracy and alliterative ring. darren is, to put it lightly, an amazement of human hulk. he looks like he could arm wrestle the incredible hulk while lifting weights with the other arm and not break a sweat. and he's a supremely good digger. but something of a loose cannon. he was supposed to have been a full on supervisor this year, but sent a message to the directors in the last days before we were supposed to be here saying that he wasnt coming. so other plans for his area were arranged. then the day before the students arrived, he texted someone saying he is coming afterall. um... ok. but other plans were not averted. so he shows up an is given the sidewalk of narciso and is supposed to cull students from my slightly-stacked-for-the-purpose-of-supplying-people-to-darren trench team. fine. then some stuff goes down. i mean really. i'm not enti
rely sure what, dont want to know, it's not my place to ask, etc etc, and suddenly darren has gone home. restatement of he's a loose cannon. to relieve the crunch of people in my trench and to keep working on the sidewalk, one of the second year students, els, was bumped to slightly more responsibility and is given the trench with my watchful eye at her side. and things have been wonderful since.

meanwhile, the supervisor group this year rocks. we're all friends, we help each other out, we discuss our archaeology, we share ideas about how to cater to the needs of the students more, and we are genuinely trying to improve the dig as it stands. cool stuff all around.

anyway, the shrine has been closed out, entirely done, photos taken and recording completed, we will start backfilling it tomorrow more than likely. the room in the stables is getting weird with little early walls running around in unlikely directions, and it will get opened again next year (hopefully by me), so no worries about having to finish that room. narciso is nearly there, but if we dont get it totally done, we can always finish it out next year as well. though i havent talked to my field director about how they want to handle that.

two days till backfill, but i'm not in the usual insane punch to the finish and happy for that. and then there will be a final report and last bits of hanging out. and then i'll miss the life and the people and the dirt and the sun for another 11 months until next year.