Yeehaw! Today Tendelle began her one month archaeologist career while simultaneously learning the skills of a farmer. This consisted of: wheelbarrowing dirt, picking the ground, hoeing the dirt, and shoveling/tossing the dirt up from 2 meters below ground. Day one confirms my friend’s statement that archaeology is backbreaking work… IT IS!! Today I will write about my wheelbarrowing experience and gradually make it to the other things we do.
Wheelbarrowing sounds straightforward enough, it just requires physical strength and not much skill. Well, I don’t have either of those qualities…. I was assigned to sector 5/10 which is the furthest away from the dirt dump. We have to wheel the dirt up the ancient ramp or road in the city , fit the wheel through the little crack on a stone on top which is where the wheels went through back in the days (quite neat actually, will bring my camera to take pictures tomorrow), then another 10 meters up another ramp that you have to have a running start for, then go on a pseudo descent to the hill/cliff that we dump dirt off of. When you get there, you have to lift the wheelbarrow to dump the dirt, taking care not to let the wheelbarrow overturn and fall down the hill, drag the wheelbarrow back which is the easy part, and repeat this 50m walk.
Skillset involved include pushing, walking, strong arms… One thing that really helps is to push the dirt to the front if the cart so that the weight is on the wheel instead of on your arms, so i try to get people to toss dirt accurately to the front. Gloves help prevent blisters but also give you less grip.
The best part about Bylazora is that it is on a windy hill so when the wheelbarrow gets to the edge of the dirt dump and you lift the wheelbarrow up to dump dirt off, you have to avoid doing it when the wind is strong because otherwise the dirt just blows up in your face.