Friday, July 12, 2013

Digging holes

Sorry about the delay in getting a new post up, the internet has been somewhat hard to come by during the last couple of weeks, for reasons that will be explained shortly.
Since my last post, I am (obviously) no longer in Jamaica, since I left I've been spending my time in the United Kingdom and so this post will pretty much be dealing with what I've been up to since then.

Having left Jamaica I got the opportunity to spend some time in what is definitely my favourite city in the world, London. After spending some time tracking down the key to a family friend's apartment in Chelsea I was free to go and enjoy myself. After treating myself to a new pair of shoes (my red nikes were donated to the shelter) I returned home to enjoy two things that I hadn't had the opportunity to enjoy in three months: an artisan brie and a bottle of Chilean red wine.

The next day I had the opportunity to attend FWD, which was awesome, but more importantly I also managed to catch up with an old friend (we've known each other for around about 20 years) that I hadn't seen in a log long time. The actual meeting itself came about quite innocently, following a facebook on the bus that went a little something like this:

Luke: Mate where are you?
Me: London at the moment dude, how about yourself?
Luke: Motherfucker. Where are you staying and what are you doing? I'm here too!
Me: Oh shit no way!!!
Luke: Way.
A well stocked tent
Needless to say, the night was pretty messy. Highlights included the bouncer at FWD being presented with about 7 or 8 WA drivers licenses at once (out to Dan Arrigoni, Rhys and Dellity on this one), meeting Zinc, Skream and Sgt. Pokes, some fantastic kebab bread, and, hearing what sounded like the Newham Generals over a house track (which, by the way, I still don't know. Anyone who wants to help out with that, please get in touch).

The next day was an absolute joy as well. I got to link with anoher group of friends I hadn't seen in a while, one of who was also quite unexpectedly. It was such an awesome feeling being on the other side of the world but at the same time feeling totally at home because of my wonderful friends. In addition I also got to go to pub that had the same decor it had in 1888, meet my first Bassett Hound (which are massive and very excitable as it turns out, not at all like Fred) and see RIP Productions DJ, which was definitely one to tick off the bucket list. Huge thanks have to go out to Whistla and Shannon for their hospitality as well.

So after some extremely awesome times I headed out of London to do what it was that I had actually come to the UK to do: Archaeology. For those who don't know, my actual job/passion involves digging very old things out of the ground and trying to understand them. To this end I returned to an excavation that I spent some time at in 2009, at the Roman town of Calleva Atrebatum. To be honest, I can't actually write up too much about it here as it's still a (relatively) unpublished site for the most part and it's not really my place to be revealing too much. If you'd like to find out more about the town and the history of the excavations there however, as well as some of the things that they've brought up, you can check it here.
Tools of the trade
The dig has been fantastic so far though, I've had the opportunity to catch up with some old friends (something of a theme so far), do some amazing archaeology, and also do a lot of drinking (again, something of a theme). Living in a tent has been something of a challenge I guess, but at least this time I don't have to deal with any crabs. The whole Silchester experience is actually really amazing, and to be honest it has probably ruined archaeology for me as no dig will really ever come close to what it's like working in Insula IX. monday nights are usually quite quiet, although we had Morris dancing at the local pub last week, Tuesdays are quiz nights, Wednesday is ultimate frisbee in the ruins of a Roman amphitheatre, Thursday is loose party night, Friday is recovery, Saturday is another loose party night and Sunday, much like Friday, is a recovery day/evening. It perhaps sounds a bit lame when related through text, but being able to spend my days excavating a Roman town and then party with like minded people in the evening for 5 weeks straight is just such an awesome opportunity and I'm so lucky to be able to indulge my passions in this way.
Excavation at Insula IX
On that note I might wrap things up as its getting a bit late here and I need to curtail my bar tab. I'll leave on a tune that I heard on Tuesday night at a wine and cheese party that we had to celebrate the birthday of one of the supervisors. Suffice to say disco was the soundtrack of the evening and if you haven't yet had to opportunity to indulge in fine wine, artisan cheese and disco music while sitting in a tent outside the ruins of a Roman town, I would highly recommend the experience.
Until next time!