Fieldworkers Digging Diligently in Trench 10 (2011)

Life away from the Site

·         Personnel on the Gournia Excavation Project stay in a little village, Pacheia Ammos, on the north coast of eastern Crete.

·         When not working on site or at INSTAP, students tend to hang out at the beach, at one of the cafes in the village, or travel to nearby towns for an evening of relaxation.

·         Students are on their own for dinner; some tend to stay in Pacheia Ammos for the night though many venture out to try new places.

·         Many archaeological sites and museums are in driving distance from Pacheia Ammos (bus schedules and car rental agencies are easily accessible), and students are encouraged to visit as many places possible.

·         Some supervisors plan site and museum visits on afternoons, Saturdays, and Sundays.

·         Anyone with an International Driver’s License (must be at least 25 years old; you can get one from AAA or any similar business—just call ahead to make sure) can rent a car. 

Team Gournia (l-r: Brian Hammer, Matt Buell, Dave Blome, Drexel Axeloons) 

  after Winning the Annual Priniatikos-Pyrgos Beach Olympics in 2011

The Work Schedule

·         We work Monday through Saturday, starting at 7:00 am. There is a break at 9:00-9:15 am and kolatsó (lunch) at 11:00-11:30 am. We finish on site around 2:00 pm. On Saturdays we do not have kolatsó and work until 1:00 pm. Saturday afternoons and Sundays are off.

·         Boots are a must for anyone working in the field. iPods, earplugs, and sunglasses are not allowed while working on site.

·         Bring enough water to the site daily. There is an on-site toilet; coordinate with your trench supervisor to bring toilet paper for the people in your trench.

·         Those who work at INSTAP Center are on a similar schedule and should be there before 7:00 am. Please note that Conservation Assistants need to help in the Stoa or Registration with the rest of the team whenever the Conservation Lab is closed.

·         Students spend Monday to Friday afternoons on post-processing jobs (including but not limited to cataloguing (ceramics and lithics), flotation, finds washing, pottery sorting, faunal analysis, plaster cataloguing, storage, databasing, and conservation) at the Center. The afternoon schedule is split into two rotating shifts, typically 2:00-4:00 pm and 4:00-6:00 pm. (Note: If interested in a specific post-processing job, please let us know in your volunteer application.)

·         We will provide all digging tools, though if you have a trowel of your own, please bring it (many swear by Marshall Town!).

·         To avoid any problems with the heat (heat prostration or heatstroke—we have experienced temperatures as high  as 38°C (100°F), and sometimes they feel much higher), make sure to salt your food at least once a day and wear a hat. Apply sunscreen liberally. 

Dinner with Senior Staff, in Honor of Joseph and Marie Shaw (2012)

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