The Road Goes Ever On and On..

It’s 2:21 Larnaka time and I’m sitting in the hotel lobby using the patchy wireless internet.  Tomorrow I leave Cyprus at 7:30 in the morning and I still have to pack.  It’s going to be a crazy time.  Looking back on the trip, I don’t regret a thing.  I’m so glad that I was able to come to Cyprus and learn so much about the archaeological process.  Everyone that we’ve talked to has been so encouraging and helpful.  They’ve really taught us to chase after our dreams and to never give up especially if we know what we want to do.  I can’t express how helpful this project has been to me and my perception of my field.  I never would have talked to many of my supervisors about their professions in such depth had it not been for this project.  Now I feel that I am better informed and more prepared to face the task that I’ve set for myself.  The road that lies before me is a long and difficult one but I’ve never been more excited about it 😀

Greek Meze

Tonight we’re going out for a delicious dinner as a team.  The last PKAP dinner is finally here.  There’s so much that I’ve learned from this trip.  One of the main points that everyone we’ve interviewed brings up is that these kinds of experiences are invaluable.  Having the opportunity to come on an archaeological dig in Cyprus is once in a lifetime, not too many people can say they’ve had that chance.  We’re making the best of it and gaining lots of knowledge as well as establishing plenty of good friendships and contacts.  Luckily we get to celebrate the close of this season with a wonderful selection of the best Greek dishes.  Essentially a meze is a small sample of many many different plates.  Although you only eat small quantities, there’s so much that you soon become full and are overwhelmed by the vast amount of food.  I can’t wait to enjoy this feast of Greek food!

Back in the Dirt!

This year’s experience with the Pyla Koutsopetria Archaeological Project has been completely different from my last one. Due to some rough spots in getting our permit, we will not be digging this year. To those who know little about archaeology, it seems like this would be the end of the game. That is most certainly not the case.

The project is not limited to digging, there is so sooo much more. For the past week or so I have been doing many projects within the museum that we are partnered with. Once an artifact comes out of the field it has to go through a lengthy cataloging and inventory process. It is a bit tedious but I am learning a lot about what can go on behind the scenes.

Even though I am not discovering treasure or running from bad guys, it is still as adventure to me, one that will not easily be forgotten :)

Rain in Cyprus?

At the beginning of the season everyone was assured that it never rains.  Ominous clouds in the sky?  Impossible, it never rains in Cyprus.  Today, it rained.  In fact it is still raining.  I’m not quite sure what to do with myself.  Hopefully the weather will clear up because we can’t go out into the field this afternoon if it continues.  That’s one thing about archaeology, you can’t do it in the rain.  I spent most of  this morning drawing the wall of a room of an early Christian basilica.  It was quite the project, but luckily I’m working with great people.  My supervisor is very knowledgeable about pretty much everything to do with archaeology.  I ran my ideas past her for graduate school and paper ideas and she’s full of amazing input.  Anyway hopefully the rain will go away and I’ll be able to finish my drawing.  Rain rain go away!

Cyprus internet

Cyprus internet has been highly undependable for me. I’ve been seeking advice as to how to use it, but my team-mates have been extremely busy. We’ve been working on an archaeological dig, and they have been working very hard. We all have. Cataloguing etc, but over all.. We have had an interesting time in Cyprus. I think we’ve learned about ourselves, and our future. I may be learning more than what I bargained for. I always try to apply every little thing to what I know. These interviews we’ve gone over have been tremendous in establishing what I want to do. I know for sure that I want to be a church historian. However, where exactly in that field is up for debate. When I find out more, I will post about it, but other than that.. I ask that God will guide me. Here’s hoping to dependable internet to post.

Time Flies!

There’s already less than a week left in this whirlwind of a trip.  So much has happened, I’m not sure where to pick up.  We’ve been busy as bees working away at the museum.  There seems to be a never ending supply of ancient pottery that needs to be washing, cataloged, and photographed.  Luckily I think we’ve been able to experience every part of this work.  We’ve learned so much about the archaeological process.  The thing I enjoy the most from this trip is the closeness we have with the senior staff members.  They’re always willing to talk to us about our futures in Graduate school or any type of academic query we have.  Everyone is always willing to help teach us about the process and support us in everything we do.  All the work we’ve been doing has caused the days to fly by so quickly.  I can’t believe how much we’ve learned.  There’s still time left for more learning and experiences.  Until later!

I exist!

Greetings! This is Becky Savaria. I arrived to Cyprus a bit later than the other two and I am finally getting around to the blog! This is my second time on the island of Cyprus, I loved it so much that I had to come back! As an official graduate of Messiah College, it is essential for me to start working on my career. Archaeology is a very long road and I am just beginning! (I’m actually looking into archaeological conservation but, it is very closely related)

I’ve always been interested in archaeology, (National Geographic often inspired me as a kid). Then last year, I was given the opportunity to go on a dig with Dr. Pettegrew. Of course I said yes! The experience in itself was amazing and I have come back to do it again. However, this time I have another purpose, to explore my potential career.

Today we conducted our first interviews and they were incredibly fascinating. The first was with Thomas Davis, the director of the Cyprus-American Archaeological Research Institute (CAARI). He had some great practical advice for us but his main emphasis was on dedication. As stated before, archaeology is a long and difficult road. You must be sure that you love it otherwise, barriers and walls will be incredibly difficult to move past. Archaeology = a lot of love for all who do it. It was great to see hs passion for his field.

Our second interview(ee) was Dimitri Nakassis, one of the co-directors of the project. He gave a very personal outlook to our potential career paths. Like Thomas, he emphasized the love of your career. There’s no point in spending all of your energy, time and, anything else on something that you wont be excited to do everyday of your life.

This has been of great importance to me especially since I have graduated. Each person that we talk to has given us hope and yet, they have also given us a realistic view of what it is that we are getting ourselves into. It is greatly appeciated and I know that my mind is finally starting to sort itself as I move on after college.

Until next time…from Larnaca, Cyprus…signing out :)

Concerning the Future

Today I was sitting in the lobby of our hotel at Petrou Brothers planning some interviews with my fellow Seekers when I began a very serious conversation with my supervisor, Dallas.  I told him how I was unsure about my future academic career.  Considering the poor job market for PhD’s and the competitiveness of graduate schools, I am currently considering alternatives such as law school.  Dallas informed me that he had pondered the same options and found himself in the exact situation when he was an undergrad.  He proceeded to relay the advantages and disadvantages of law school as well as graduate school.  I must admit I was a bit shocked to hear some of what he had to say.  He was both encouraging and realistic throughout the entire conversation.  There is a lot of information to process concerning my future, but I have learned one very important thing from this conversation: do what interests me and will provide a fulfilling vocation.   I am definitely already learning a lot on this trip, about my interests and my future.

Sandy Beaches!

Hello all!  This is my fourth day in Cyprus.  So far we’ve had some great orientation to the island’s history and culture.  While we wait on our permit to commence archaeological excavation and other work, we’ve been walking around the lovely city of Larnaka and figuring out what’s around our hotel.  We also had our first project Greek lesson this morning.  It’s nice to be able to exchange a few phrases with the locals.  In addition to our rigorous academics, we’re lucky enough to be a mere two blocks away from the beach.  The sun is out and the weather is beautiful.  Cyprus is definitely an isle of paradise!

In Zurich

Well.. Our group is on it’s way to Cyprus. Melissa Hogan is in Brussels and I, Matt Jag, am in Zurich, Switzerland. The weather outside is really interesting. Nothing can really describe European weather.. It almost reminds me of those scenes in Lord of the Rings.. Switerland is a beautiful country nonetheless. I am currently in Zurich for a 5 hour lay-over which has been an interesting amount of time spent. Hopefully Cyprus will come soon, but until then I wait in this airport for the excitement contained within the island of Cyprus.