Riga slides in progress

Riga town samples set in resin, ready for cutting into slides
Another week of lab work in Reading this week for the Ecology of Crusading project. The samples I boxed up in September for resin impregnation are now ready for cutting, and hopefully some of them will be finished into slides by the end of the week. They look like they've set really well; I was a little worried there would be problems as some of them were quite damp with lots of 'manure' layers, which can sometimes distort when dried or interfere with resin curing. I boxed up a few more samples from medieval Riga (Latvia), and 3 from Święta góra (Poland) today. It's going to be a tremendous amount of microscope work to get them all analysed, but I'm looking forward to it!

I also started preparing some lake core samples for ICP analysis today, which was delayed due to some minor hiccups which will hopefully be corrected tomorrow. That should take the rest of the week, with the Association for Environmental Archaeology conference starting on friday. I will be heading to the keynote, and really hope I can make some of the talks on saturday; lots of presentations on Near Eastern projects that I would love to hear the latest results from, including the Central Zagros Archaeological Project that I worked on in 2008 and 2009.