We are nearing the end of our dig, but fear not! This does not mean the end of blogging, as we shall continue throughout the year to bring you the latest post excavation news and interpretations from Cosmeston. In the meantime, the dig isn’t over yet! Today we bring a blog by Tom Durbin, first year undergraduate on the pleasures of rain, curved wall features and Schwarzenegger:
As Arnold Schwarzenegger once famously said, ‘DO IT, DO IT NOW, KILL ME, I’M HERE’. This probably has no relevance to archaeology, but it is pretty funny (especially when said in Ahnold’s ridiculous accent) and I’m sure the supervisors all feel like beefy Austrians whilst telling us what to do (they don’t ask us to kill them, although if they did, I’m pretty sure Andy would be running for the hills).
Today it rained a lot. It was like the little people living in the sky all decided to flush their toilets at the same time. Water is annoying. It’s wet, cold, loud, irritating and leads to clay getting stuck to your boots, weighing them down and making you feel as if you’ve had a transplant from the Yeti. Morale was low, probably the most depressing day in a trench since The Somme, although this time ‘going over the top’ was a good thing as it meant dryness and biscuits in the marquee for an early break.
Although the copious amount of dihydrogen oxide was not appreciated by the diggers, it did reveal something very important in the trench: a drain in the north-south wall, just south of the robber cut, which should be very interesting to excavate. Another notable feature is the wall in the north-east corner which has been identified as being the other side of a circular building partially excavated by GGAT in the 80s. There are a number of interpretations as to what this building is, one possibility is that it is a baking house like the one already excavated and reconstructed in the village, which would explain the red clay (indicating burning has taken place) surrounding the wall. There is also a suggestion that it may be a dovecote (a later, still partially standing dovecote, survives nearby).
Our prayers were answered, however, and it stopped raining half way through the day. And so began 3 hours of arguments on existence, the universe and whether Richard Attenborough’s character in Jurassic Park is a scientist or not (he is, obviously). There were also a number of games of 20 questions, featuring objects as diverse as thatched roofs, fire and hatred. Oh, and we did a lot of digging as well. Do you really think we spend our days playing games? Pah!
We also identified a new wall today. The stones have been visible for a while and Rob was adamant that it wasn’t a wall for some reason, even though his past archaeological experience can be written on a single sheet of bad quality toilet paper. You know, that horrible stuff you get in public toilets. He now owes Andy a beer.
Before I pass on the blogging baton (or blaton, as I like to say), I feel the need to write the following words. They may not make sense to you, but they have a certain significance to the dig, and need to be recorded, ‘Baby monkey, baby monkey, riding on a pig, baby monkey’. A simple YouTube search should suffice (Ed: link is here for those too lazy to Google). And thus endeth the word of Tom.