You would think everyone would be too tired of an evening to do much more than a few rounds of scrabble……
For some reason (nothing to do with there being 135 people on site!) this Thursday morning was madly busy! Between 9am and 9.30am I dealt with a dozen queries covering a range of topics: how do we clean the portaloos; what time is the school group arriving and where is the key for the public carpark barrier; do we have anyone free to help John Brown set up the Exhibition Centre; can we see a doctor; what time is Chris Speed’s ‘Understanding Soils’ talk in the marquee, who is on Tea Duty, where has the Site Noticeboard gone;why has the Golf Buggy run out of power; the internet is down!; can we have some new buckets; will you come and look at the archaeology??? It’s all in a day’s work for a Site Director. All my final year students were off site as it is Graduation Day….every now and then they would emerge from various tent looking butterfly bright and beautiful in suits and summer dresses! Congratulations all!
The visiting School today was Wessex School, led by teacher Guy Beattie. We had 60 school children on site and Zoe and her team swung into action and delivered, once again, a great experience for the children.
The most popular activity (as always) is digging in the ‘Dig Pit’.
After lunch, Lisa Lodwick arrived to give a talk in St. Mary’s Church on topics related to her PhD; Archaeobotany at Silchester – looking at waterlogged, mineralised and carbonised remains – and what this evidence can tell the archaeologist.
The day’s end was marked by our first Site Tour of the season: a tradition where we all join Mike for a walk around the archaeology for a review of the past week. It’s as if we have never been away. The day was glorious – perfect digging weather – and the light breeze combined with strong sunshine probably means there are a few sunburnt people today! The Silchester Smile is going strong!
We looked at the week’s exciting discoveries in Insula III: for example, at the bottom of one the Victorian trenches Rose and Becky have found what we think is a tile column base – probably one of several along the north-south street.
It has been a fantastic first few days on site. The weather has been with us. All cleaning has been completed and digging now begins in earnest. Tomorrow is our first day off and we will be back on Saturday, re-energised and ready for the week ahead!