I’m so (so) sorry again for not writing in such a long time. And I’m also so sorry for just writing in English. It takes a lot of time to write in two languages and right now I don’t have that kind of free time. We’re very busy everyday and after dinner we just wanna relax a bit and have some fun. But actually, the main reason for this long break is that the access to the internet is quite unstable. Apparently, it is working fine now; so I’m hoping it will stay this way for the next few weeks. I’ll try to publish some other posts (these ones just in Portuguese) so that it doesn’t feel like I’ve abandoned you guys.
As a small summary of what’s been going on here… This is our first week-end here and yesterday was our first day-out too (Saturdays are the only days when we don’t work). We are about 20 volunteers and every working day we’re divided into two groups. One of the groups stays in the house doing lab work, whereas the other one goes to the excavation site. Unfortunately I’ve only been to the excavation site once. In the lab, we’ve been doing a lot of new stuff for me. Actually, I’m only used to wash the artifacts and now we do all sort of things. I don’t wanna get into too much details about it, but this way we get to know more about the artifacts we’re discovering on the dig and the whole process they go by when they’re analyzed. I don’t wanna sound mean, but I’m quite happy that I don’t have to uncover pottery (the only thing I would discover in the previous excavation I took part – it’s not like it’s not interesting; I just don’t “appreciate” them that much); at this excavation, because it’s a paleolithic site, we basically only discover bones and lithics. Uhhh by the way, I’m excavation at the La Ferrassie site (I’ve been failing to mention this little detail). Here, in past decades, some skeletons have been discovered, but I don’t think we’re going to be that lucky this year. So, we’ll probably only discover animal bones.
Most of the people here are either American or Canadian, but we also have people from Iran, Norway, Belgium, the Netherlands and France. This is what we can call an international excavation (almost one representative from each continent). People are oddly too nice. I mean, probably this is the reality, but I don’t know, it’s like they’re genuinely nice. I kind of wish I could spend an entire academic year with all these people, especially some of them. I had a rough first night here and this girl was really sweet and kind to me; and she still checks if I’m alright. I thought it would take me a lot more to adjust to this (like it happened in other similar circumstances) but it only took me about 24h. The people are really nice and they make us feel very comfortable here. I wish I could feel like this everywhere I go… Oh well. Better here than nowhere. One of the best things about this group of people (not there’s nothing bad about it, actually) is that they don’t bug you to do something that you don’t want to; they accept and respect your decisions and your own lifestyle. I can be specific… I hate when people are trying to convince me to drink (and maybe get drunk), especially when they’re doing this for several days or some weeks on a row. Saying that, I have to admit that I loved your answer M. when you asked me whether I was going to drink or not. It was absolutely perfect. It’s only been one week but I already know I’ll miss these little moments. I think this experience will restore some hope on me about humanity because, apparently, there’s actually nice people out there, not just douchebags; which kind of makes me wonder if I’m living in the right country…
Since this is the third excavation I’m taking part on, this is not a brand new thing for me. But the way we’re living here, yes. Instead of living in a house, we’re camping on the backyard of the house of the project (as you can see in one of the pictures). I’ve never camped in my life and this has been one of those things I’ve always said I don’t want to try. However, I’m kind of finding this an interesting idea. My tent is quite spacious and I feel comfortable here. I thought I would have problems on my back because we’re sleeping on the floor, but no, I’m sleeping just fine. The only downside of this is that during the day, because the tent is in the middle of a field, it gets really hot to the point in which the tent seems like a green house. Other than that, it’s perfectly fine. This excavation also has another peculiar detail that I’ve never seen before: we have shores to do, such as cleaning the bathrooms, cleaning the kitchen, washing the dishes, prepare the meals, etc.
On our day free, yesterday, we decided to visit a close-by town called Sarlat-la-Canéda (also know as simply Sarlat). It’s located in the Dordogne department in southwestern France. This town is really (really) pretty and so French, if you know what I mean. It’s a medieval town which is something that I quite appreciate in France, since some of them are still preserved. It was a really hot day so we only stayed there till after lunch time. We didn’t do much on this day because we didn’t have time to decide something more elaborate. Below I show you some of the photos I’ve taken in the last couple of days, including the ones I took yesterday at Sarlat. Once again, I didn’t do anything to these photos; I didn’t changed them on photoshop or anything similar. One of the photos has a kind of drawing look but that it’s because my camera has that effect as an option.
Does anyone know the Dordogne department? What do you guys think of the photos?