Sunday, May 13, 2007

Pre-Season at Tel es-Safi/Gath Day 1

I’ve finished 18 of 29 chapters of the book I’m working on and this week I’m taking a little break. For 5 days this week, I’m participating in a 5 day, pre-season excavation at Tel es-Safi-Gath led by the director, Prof. Aren Maeir of Bar Ilan, members of his team, and Jeff Chadwick of BYU. Today was my first day digging and we had a great time! We are working in Jeff’s area, Area F at the top of the tel. In the foreground of this photo from my earlier visit to the site, is a pierced stone used as part of a bone tool workshop from the early Iron Age and behind it is a rounded tower from the Crusader Period. I woke up with a sore throat this morning and was worried that I would end up wimping out, but the day just seemed to fly by. We are cleaning this area and taking down a couple of the baulks between excavation units in preparation for the July excavation season. The top photo shows us at the beginning and all of those piles of sandbags were taken down. I’ve got two students coming here and I think they’re going to have a great time!

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