Archaeology is Everywhere!

Stephanie Steinke writes:

As the weeks start to melt together so does the pile of crap on the desk next to my bed.  The rooms here are an alright size, but when you put 4 girls in 1 room for 7 weeks with no dressers/shelves, it becomes a problem.  I have started to put all of my stuff on the desk next to my bed since I don’t have a nightstand like the other three girls.  The strata are forming.  At the end of the 7 weeks I will have to excavate my own household debris and piece together my life.  I am sure I will find things that I will have thought I had lost, or find new things I never knew I had.  The triangle ruler I brought that I now cannot find (and wish I had for drawing top plans) is probably in the earliest level.

Onto the real world of archaeology.  The square I am working in in Area J had a massive make-over today.  It lost nearly all of its walls and it’s now unrecognizable.  Hopefully now that we can just dig down without major architecture in the way we will reach a lower level (J4?)  and find some interesting new things, contemporary with the large temple in Area J.  We’ll see.  The rest of J is progressing nicely as well.  Our bucket lines have nearly backfilled  2 large squares already and we have moved to a bucket line up the steep hill behind the area.  Though the work week has just begun, people are already thinking of the weekend, this will be the weekend when a large portion will leave us and only the 7 weekers will be here until the new group arrives.  Many new friendships have been formed and it’s so sad that they are forced to end so quickly.  But I’m sure the next group will be just as fun and I can’t wait to meet them.

This past weekend we had our first class trip to visit some other working sites.  We went to Hazor and another small site in the hills overlooking the Sea of Galilee.  At Hazor we had a great tour by Dr.’s Zuckerman and Amnon Ben Tor.  The palace, temple and public buildings there are really impressive.  We are also treated to a much needed breakfast while we were there ( the night before had been long for lots of us).  After Hazor, which is a large site similar to Megiddo, we went to find a smaller Roman/Byzantine village.  It took an excursion into the hills and past some cows on a path rarely used and numerous cell phones calls to figure out that we were on the wrong road.  Eventually we found it.  It was really small and this was it’s first official season of excavation, they had only done some test trenches and surveys before, and not much had been uncovered yet.  But the views from the hill over the Galilee were incredible.  Overall the day was great, it was especially nice for me to get back to Tiberias and the Galilee, I had spent 7 weeks on another dig near there and this was a nice return for me.  That area is still my favorite part of the country and I hope to get back there someday for longer than a weekend.


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