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Q: For Digsalot, please. ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   3 Comments )
Subject: For Digsalot, please.
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: probonopublico-ga
List Price: $2.00
Posted: 14 May 2004 03:52 PDT
Expires: 13 Jun 2004 03:52 PDT
Question ID: 346251
Have you ever found anything interesting on your 'digs'?

(The Iranian-type stuff, I mean.)

Subject: Re: For Digsalot, please.
Answered By: digsalot-ga on 14 May 2004 22:09 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Hi Bryan

We didn't do any 'digging' at all.  An archaeological survey is
essentially a mapping project.  We identify surface artifacts and
features but don't touch them.  They are then listed according to
priority for future research.  Even then the sites might not be 'dug,'
but explored with non-invasive techniques such as ground penetrating
rader and other GIS methods.

The reason I got to do so much traveling is that the last few months
before the project was formally shut down, it was in essence already
moribund, due once again to Iranian internal politics.  So since we
were still being paid and many on the survey were Iranian nationals,
those of us from outside the country were treated to some interesting
tours with some of the best guides around.

One of the Iranian members of the team had a family home on the
Caspian coast, his sister lived on the Gulf coast.  And between them
they managed to drag me/us around much of the country.  Luckily they
were both fluent in English. I don't think my Farsi vocabulary ever
exceeded 20 words, mostly for ordering food.

Since then I have spent most of my field time in Egypt.  I haven't
been back to Iran since.

As for Egypt, I do mostly graphic reconstruction and when in the
'field' mostly cataloging work.  I'm only a BA rather than a PhD.  So
my classification is "archaeological technician."

Have I ever told you about two camels named Mildred and Clarice?


Clarification of Answer by digsalot-ga on 15 May 2004 10:11 PDT
Mildred and Clarice weren't really indelicate.  They were a pair of
camels (mother and daughter) who were used by the same archaeological
teams for years.  Over time, they developed a knack of being able to
identify grad sutdents (otherwise known as camp slaves) from all the
other people in the area and doing their own particular form of camel
style grad student harassment. (usually involved biting, spitting,
chasing, etc.)

My only problem with grad students (and even post docs) was that I
could never train one to brew and serve a proper cup of tea.


Clarification of Answer by digsalot-ga on 17 May 2004 13:26 PDT
Thanks Bryan for both the kind words and the extra.  If you need us
again the the future (oh why an I going through all that? - you're
always here :)

probonopublico-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $5.00
Hi, Digs

Fascinatinating stuff. Many thanks.

And, no, you have never told me about the two camels named Mildred and Clarice.

And, if I were to ask, would that be one question or two?

But, more importantly, would it be a-huh rather indelicate of me to enquire?

All the Best


Subject: Re: For Digsalot, please.
From: johnfrommelbourne-ga on 14 May 2004 04:54 PDT
So is that why he/she went to Iran in the first instance; to dig for
artifacts. I did ask but he has not got back to me yet.

Subject: Re: For Digsalot, please.
From: probonopublico-ga on 14 May 2004 05:00 PDT
Hi, John

Yes, Digs did post a Clarification to your Request: "Would have liked
to know why you actually spent so long there however?"

The Alborz archaeological survey was a five year project which was
interrupted in a little under a year by political events.  The plateau
and mountain regions have been occupied since early prehistory and had
never been fully investigated. Digs

Don't forget to take a shovel ... It's something else for you to do
when you get there.
Subject: Re: For Digsalot, please.
From: johnfrommelbourne-ga on 14 May 2004 20:31 PDT
Thanks for the tip Bryan.

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