Sunday, July 18, 2010

Thursday, July 15

Today the weather has taken a turn for the worse. It is cool, windy and we are getting some rain. At one point it rains hard enough to drive us from the trenches and into the shelter of the large storage units we have onsite. Although it will clear a little in the afternoon, the windy conditions will remain.
We start digging in our newly roped off areas and are going to be allowed to go deeper than we have been on the rest of the site. We are trying to find some large stones that would indicate some sort of structure in this part of the fort. Back to the Mattocks. We begin to move a lot of dirt, but are slowed by the need to comb it for useful stuff.

Late morning finds me on my knees with my trowel going over the area I have just cleared when something blue appears under my trowel. This is HIGHLY UNUSUAL and I catch my breath. The color alone is so unusual that for a few moments I am not sure my eyes are working right. (The color blue is the hardest color to reproduce. In the ancient world the only known way was to grind up a semiprecious stone know as lapis lazuli. The cost of the raw stone alone made anything blue in color a prized possession.) I begin to work around it very carefully and in a few minutes I can remove it. It is a piece of glass, medium blue in color, a half circle with decretive lines cut into it. It is clearly a piece of jewelry, probably part of a necklace.

All work around me stops and everyone comes to take a look. Climbing out of the trench I go in search of Matt. When he sees me coming he can tell just by the look on my face I have something cool. It is so different from the stuff we have been finding that everyone wants a look and at lunch I play show and tell.
As a result of my jewel I go slow in the afternoon, in case the rest of the necklace is hiding nearby. The rest of the guys are getting deeper (almost a foot!) and are finally beginning to find stones large enough to indicate the structure we have been in search of for the last week.

In the evening I take a walk about and wander by the local movie/concert hall. I notice that they are having a live music show in conjunction with the BRASS festival. Tonight is a couple of U.K. jazz bands and at 10 pounds I wander in to listen. While they are not going to change the course of modern music, it is nice to hear some “live” music as opposed to the “dead” music (as in anything in an MP3 format) I have been listening to for the last two weeks.

About the images:

1. Hauling dirt and drawing stones.
2. Signs of patterns in the rubble?
3. My blue glass jewel find.
4. Cleaning up at the end of the day.

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