Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Changing perspectives

July appears to be whizzing by nicely. Unusually for me, I am still in the UK. For the past 10 years (has it really been that long?!) I have spent every summer abroad doing fieldwork, and for most of those summers at least a few weeks have been spent collecting samples at Catalhoyuk in Turkey. This year will be the second year that I have been unable to go - last year I was coming to the end of my contract on the Feeding Stonehenge project and had to stay in the lab, and this year I have too many teaching commitments and writing to complete. Depsite this I will still be doing some UK based fieldwork in the next couple of weeks, more on that as it happens. Lucky for me in the age of social media and blogging, I can keep up to date with the latest news from Catalhoyuk as it happens via Scott Haddow's blog, A Bone to Pick. Scott is a member of the osteoarchaeology team at Catalhoyuk and has been posting regular updates, including an amazing find of intact woven textile in a baby burial. It is funny how much more emotive such finds are now that I am a parent. Up until this point I have always had quite a sense of detachment when working with human remains. I guess in some ways it can only be useful to have a sense of empathy during interpretation, though of course it is important to maintain a sense of objectivity.

Honeycomb weathering at Tynemouth Priory
And in entirely unrelated news, here is a lovely example of honeycomb weathering for your geoarchaeological viewing pleasure, from a recent visit to Tynemouth Priory on the Northeast coast of England. You can see examples of this distinctive weathering pattern concentrated in specific parts of the priory and surrounding walls, presumably due to the direction of prevailing winds.

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