Saturday, August 21, 2010


Currently I am in Campania and the sky is the never-changing cloudless blue that I became familiar with in Greece. A few weeks ago, though, it came as a shock to find that excavations sometimes actually have to deal with rain. Sure, I knew rain fell on British excavations and on Jamestown and stuff; but having never experienced it myself, it didn't seem like an archaeological reality. I was spoiled in Greece, where it stops raining in early June and then, well, that's it - no more moisture for the rest of the summer. The Mugello Valley, on the other hand, turned out to be wetter than I anticipated.

At first I was a the whole covering-the-trenches-with-tarps-at-night thingy. And then I found out why it was necessary.

Bailing out PC 40.

In the end, the tarps were not wholly effective and some trenches got a bit...damp. This was especially unfortunate for those students digging through a deep layer made up of dark, ashy soil. Which turned into a gruesome greyish-brown ooze. They ended up having to sift the mud by hand.
Robert of PC 41, covered in black slime.

A PC 41 bucket. Yuck.

Alas, my own PC 42 did not escape unscathed, either. Yet somehow my students were awesome enough to stay relatively clean despite it all.
PC 42's sparkling clean Jack and Cassie excavate a muddy rubble pit that turned out to be a robbing trench for yet another wall, removed and filled in during the Hellenistic period.

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