This from newly-minted archaeologist daughter (M.Ph.) on her first paid dig at the Helike site in the Greek Peloponnese:

“Hey everyone,

I’ve been working at the dig for over two weeks now, and it’s going pretty well. I’m driving people around a lot and in charge of the Romanos/Hellenistic site, currently on pause while the backhoe opens the Classical site (half underwater). No big finds yet, but I’m hopeful I will unearth the golden kouros any day now. There are three trenches open, and a lot of work to be done. It’s nice having a staff position, today I fell asleep in the dirt. The beach is right next to our hotel and that’s where we park ourselves all afternoon…The archaeologist looks like she’s a tough cookie, but she’s super nice and I get along with everyone really well. Dimitri, the backhoe operator (like an extension of his arm!) picked me up in the claw last week and took me for a spin, then let me try it myself! I see a new career on the horizon. We had some pretty close calls with the forest fires here; I watched the entire mountain range behind our hotel go up in flames last week. Around 3 am I was actually worried we might have to evacuate as the entire area in front of us was burning…thank God for the beach. The helicopters and water-bombers are still picking up right in front of us trying to put out fires further away, and we just hope they don’t come near us again…I really don’t want to clear ash off my newly cleaned site”.

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