A buddy of mine sent me a reminder today of why I am happy to not be a contract archaeologist. It’s twelve below zero centigrade around here, and still a number of unfortunate Linköping colleagues are out digging. And they’re not digging Tut-ankh-amen’s tomb today either: apparently they’ve been assigned the task of excavating and documenting an ancient ploughsoil. Yes, an expanse of clayey soil churned by the ard or plough a long, long time ago. Poor bastards!
See those fuzzy blotches in the pic? They’re snowflakes.
Update 8 February: Says my Linköping colleague Katarina Österström:
“The photographer is Fredrik Samuelsson of the County Museum. It’s true that we’re digging a ploughsoil, but we’ve also got an ancient stream bed that’s meandered around a cupmarked [Bronze Age rock carvings] outcrop. In the stream bed are pottery and bones, burnt and unburnt, and a lot of burnt stones. We’re continuing the dig in the spring, hopefully under better circumstances.”