Falling out of the baulk and keeping the spirit up!

Julia Martins writes:

Hey, everybody!

This has been a great week, here at the dig. In my area, we are bringing down baulks (actually, yesterday I came down with one of them, which was not so fun, because I twisted my knee and now am trying to recover from it as quickly as possible), doing a lot of sifting (both dry and wet), pick axing and basically, working hard, as usual. The company of my fellow team members at the area makes the work lighter – we have interesting conversations, play bands / movies games, do occasional singings and try to teach each other our own languages – which includes korean, hebrew and some portuguese. It all makes it easier to work here and, as Hannah said, wait for the simple things in our lives (besides breakfast and flip flops, I would add napping, waiting for falafel night here at the kibbutz and calling home).

Another thing I love here are the weekend trips. The firs one I went to Jerusalem, which was just amazing. Just walking around the city, getting to know its temples, people, food and little shops was awesome. Going to the western wall was the most overwhelming experience I had there, and redoing the steps of the Via Crucis was really interesting. This past weekend I had two day trips – on friday, we had a field trip to another dig, Tel Es-Safi. Even though it was cool visiting another site, I`m glad to be digging here in Megiddo – even if sometimes we think our area supervisors are too perfectionists with sections and levelling, the results are worth it. After that, we stopped for a while in Beth Shemesh, to see the cross-shaped water system. On saturday, I got to go to Nazareth and Mount Tabor. I loved both, specially Mount Tabor, with its incredible view and gardens around the Basilica. In Nazareth, the Basilica of Annunciation was really cool too and, quoting Hannah again, a bit of chance always helps. We got there just in time for mass.

For the next days, I plan on recovering from my knee injury, organising weekend trips, feeding the cats that are always around our rooms here at the kibbutz, and writing an article for my research program in Brazil – article that I`m presenting in a congress the exact next day of my arrival home! Anyway, I`m having fun here, despite the article deadline and the knee injury. I miss home, of course, but I`m learning so much and having such interesting conversations and experiences that I`m really glad to be here – and falling out of baulks is just a minor thing when you`re so happy as I am.

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