It’s Sunday night and I am keenly aware that a blog instalment is overdue. An eleven hour work day leaves little time or energy to spare and the choice becomes: hole up in the work room alone on the computer – which is mainly how I’ve spent the day – or socialize in the fresh air enjoying the evening’s selection of refreshing beverage for what remains of the day? You can guess which option wins out most nights. My compromise tonight was to socialize and then retire to my room with the computer, sacrificing a bit of sleep time. I had a nap this afternoon – it’s a trade off I may regret.
It’s hard to believe that we’re already into our third week of excavation. The call to prayer is coming a little later. We’re rising now in the dark. Even eleven hour days drift by surprising quickly once a rhythm is established. The dig “slide” is in full effect – a state of being constantly muddled as to exactly which day of the week it actually is. On Sunday the week stretches ahead interminably – but then you wake on what feels like Tuesday morning and realize that it’s actually Thursday and nearly week’s end.
Perhaps the confusion begins on Sunday – which feels like Monday because it’s the start of the work week. We’ll go through to Thursday, then celebrate the approaching weekend with a barbecued meal in the evening – an excuse to clean up a little and indulge in additional evening beverages. Friday is a half day and we start by sleeping in – until 7 am! – and there is usually a post-breakfast tel tour. That’s “tel” as in a hill or mound, not “tell” as in reciting the week’s discoveries, but that’s what it’s about. As a group we visit the areas under excavation and catch up on each other’s progress. Back to the dig house and various duties until lunch time and then we’re free for a day and a half.
It’s not much time for extensive travel – but we can usually find enough locally to amuse ourselves. Or not. Sometimes a good book and a nap are sufficient to recharge – throw in a shower and it’s a five-star holiday. There are other attractions in the vicinity. This past weekend featured an excursion to a nearby city, so I’ll leave you with some visual illustration of how we passed the time. Now I’ll catch some sleep and try to conserve enough energy to compose something more creative for the next instalment.