Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Monday, December 22, 2008
Just this summer, I was trench-mates with another Archaeological Studies Program student who happens to be the unpaid and overworked web technician. Having great knowledge of the unknown world of megabytes and whatnot, trench-mate was used to explaining things in great detail. She micromanaged every able body working on the trench, having redefined the term "flexi-break" from break-at-your-own-pace to break-when-I-say-you-can-slave. Thus, earning her the moniker: Herr Dictator (which should be Fraulein but eh nobody speaks German).
I grabbed my trowel with my good hand, grabbed a bucket with the other, dug my knees to the ground, and raised my trowel high "whoosh". Just when my beautiful, loyal, sturdy trowel was about to hit glorious layer 2... Herr Dictator cut through my concentration with a well placed "Pau!". As HD explained in great detail how they got to where they are, several thoughts formed in my head. First was that although I took a year off from the field, it doesn't really matter that I was around for HD's first time to excavate in that seniority doesn't count in her book. Second, I ought to have obtrusively run around the trench, noisily leaf through their recording sheets to make it known that I was doing my homework. Third, if I was smart, I ought to have asked HD courteously (with a good helping of humility) what I was supposed to do because I just work here and I haven't marked the trench as my territory. Ddoing them would have given me extra water rations instead of an unpleasant lecture on how I haven't done this in a year and on how Victor thinks I'm an idiot. Victor might be right because instead of doing the smart thing, I looked at HD straight in the eyes and said: "Look love, this isn't my first time see." (HD: O.o)
Parched for a good deal of time, I was taking a swig of good cold water beside a neighboring trench dug by Dr. Grace Barretto-Tesoro and company. I recounted why my water rations were cut. "Digging isn't all about, well, digging, Pau," said Doc Grace, "It's also about working with different kinds of people. Excavations are all about people."
I've decided to share this tidbit of wisdom to everyone. I hope it's grammatical enough to be enjoyed and understood.
And, island communities are special -- bound together physically and mentally. Peter has assured me that running a lab in the Banda Islands will be even more more enjoyable than usual, and that the lack of typical access to resources will make the job even more fun.
I'll be arriving at the end of January, and will meet you all somewhere between Bali, Yogyakarta, Surabaya and Ambon... I can't wait to shed my wool hat!
Saturday, December 20, 2008
It was a chance of a life time for me to join The Banda Excavation back in 2007. The journey to Banda itself was really an experience. First there was bad weather in Ambon that made all the travel from and to Ambon cancelled, so we have to stay in
The Excavation in 2007 giving me a lot of experience, I learned plenty of new stuff during the excavation. New methods, new tools, new ways to handle the artifacts during excavations, and many more. And the best thing is that Mr. Lape and Pak Daud held a small presentations to the people in Ay Islands. Starting from elementary school student to the elders in the
I can’t hardly wait to go to Banda again…I’ll see u all there!!!!!Ay Island Excavation 2007 Team
Friday, December 19, 2008
Hello, my name is Josh, I am 34 years old, and this is my very first blog post. This journey will contain many firsts I hope, the biggest of which will be my first experience abroad. I have never even been to Mexico, and only went to Canada once after a wrong turn. I just got my first passport and visa, and am itching to stamp them up and see what's out there.
I have always been interested in archaeology. Thanks to an angel named Teri, I have returned to the University of Washington after a twelve year hiatus, and after completing my first semester in ages, I am celebrating an appearance on the dean's list. Going back made me think about what I wanted to do with my life. At first I wanted to be a math teacher, but for my first quarter back, I didn't even talk to a counselor and stayed with courses I knew would hold my interest. After a week in my Archaeology 105 class though, I realized that archaeology would be a perfect field for me. I've always been interested in history and the evolution of the human race, and I've owned a metal detector since I was eight, so I have spent a lot of time in the dirt digging up anything from coins to old farm equipment. This trip to Indonesia will not only be one of personal discovery but one of professional as well; in other words I want to see if the archaeological field is as good for me as I think it will be.
Now, as I look out the window on a frozen wasteland, I can't help but think of where I will be just over two weeks from now. My bag is already packed, my vaccinations are all caught up, and I am ready to start the journey, the first chapter of which is lovingly entitled "Indonesia Josh and the Temple of Spice."
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
'A long road to reach our destination will not always easy' I always keep this phase in my mind when I have to think about my future goal. I always like to travel to different places, learn and gain experience from seeing different things and people outside, which I think it is very important for me to understand more this divers blue planet among many people. This is always run around in my head most of the time and become my inspiration for me regarding future activities.
I have become interested in prehistoric period for some reason which I think it could bring me to understand more about the human social evolution from 'small communities to become a great empire'. My primary area of interest is mainland Southeast Asia which I have been studied for several years since I was a second year of my undergraduate. I have conducted several researches both personal and working for various professors around this area. I have realized that the interaction of people themselves to their environment give me more perspectives in order to comprehend their cultural movement and evolution. I have been fantasized by the terms of exploration and field survey and try to understand the whole image of the communities and reconstruct their past social activities.
From those reason and motivation, I wish to travel and learn more of other part of Southeast Asia, I found this field school program keep my attention and I think I will use this opportunity to gain more about Southeast Asian Island and the archaeological field method which will fulfill my experience of understanding of Southeast Asia which I could learn a lot more about prehistoric social landscape and the evolution to become historic communities in this region.
I have prepared a lots of question to motivate myself to research more about Indonesia and Southeast Asian Island landscape and I am so excited to be there. I hope to gain more both academic and personal experience and get to know a new friends over there. See you in Banda!