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The trowels - they deserve respect

William provides musings on a varied day:

Our second day on the site managed to be surprisingly varied. After a morning session spent on site photography, we spent a while helping to excavate the trench, cutting back the fill from the previous years’ diggers (turning up a surprising amount of plastic – careless of them).

After a beautiful morning spent in these genteel pursuits, the heavens decided to open, and sent us scurrying back into the safety of Dee House, abandoning the trench in favour of a session on the proper use of a context recording form. Entirely necessary, but strangely uninspiring when you could be poking things with trowels.

(On that note, I am obliged by the mighty Jasmine to inform all and sundry that “Trowel-5” is a thing. Try it, you’ll enjoy it.)

Still, we did get to learn about soil classification, which satisfied our strange desire to muck around in the dirt (Dan W enjoyed this more than most).

The remainder of our group's day was devoted to a refresher course in the esoteric art of the Dumpy Level, a fundamental part of which is a mathematical process of stunningly simple addition that I was morbidly ashamed to realise I had forgotten the steps to. (Seriously. There were three of them, and I’d managed to mix two of them up. I only used the ruddy thing last year.)

After wiping the egg from my face, we spent the rest of the afternoon determining the relative heights of the flowerbeds and paths around Grosvenor Park, and pondering the site, planning how best to take a hypothetical level measurement of the brick hearth feature in the centre of the trench. A perfectly intriguing day, although it may take a month of washes to get the mud out of my jeans.

An Addendum on the Importance of Naming Your Trowel

  1. It is important to name your trowel.
  2. Very important.
  3. Your trowel will appreciate it.