Saturday, January 1, 2000 New Year’s Day!
We slept in. Abu Sami and Abu Abed prepared a special holiday breakfast that again included fried eggs. Most of us went to the Dead Sea Spa Hotel and for a small fee we were able to use their beach and swim in the Dead Sea. We brought a second breakfast with us, then had dessert and tea in the hotel restaurant. Food cravings were satisfied by three trips to the dessert bar.
After dinner back in compound several of us walked into Mazraa’ and called the States. Apparently no Y2K problems occurred. I wasn’t particularly worried about them in Jordan since complex societies here already had experience with Y1K.
Sunday, January 2, 2000
Mindy (aka Mindyana Jones) is out sick, so I took her unit today. Her Jordanian crew, Hammed and Salon, are doing well, and I did some shovel work myself.
To address the sickness in the dig house, we’re going to try a new water source. I drove to Karak with Ilya and our Jordanian Department of Antiquities representative, Khalil, to buy water containers and 200 liters of spring water. We’ll try using the spring water for drinking, and washing dishes with the boiled water. (I’ll stick with double filtered.) Abu Sami and Abu Abed made pizzas for lunch.
Monday, January 3, 2000
I spent most of the day on the site mapping the eastern structure.
Abu Sami and Abu Abed made cream puffs for dessert at supper. If it seems like I’m obsessing about food, we all are. While several of us were sitting outside the dig house watching another spectacular sunset, Shawn walked by. “Shawn, look at that sunset!” someone said. “Yeah, it’s a sunset,” responded Shawn, “but did you know that there’s a McDonald’s in Karak?”
Big visit to Petra is coming up. I booked a room in Wadi Musa for the trip.
Tuesday, January 4-Wednesday, January 5, 2000
Jamie is helping me as we continue to map the site. We’re using three measuring tapes to triangulate. It allows us to position the structures. I’ll do the detail work later when the theodolite is on site. During the evening I take the measurements that we made during the day and plot them.
Thursday, January 6, 2000
It was windy, cold and wet on the site. I surveyed with Mohammed. Fortunately it was a short day as we tried to get an early start on the road to Petra. It was a three hour bus ride that seemed longer, through dark roads and in at least one place, fog. We made it to Wadi Musa, the town outside Petra, and I checked into my room at the Forum Hotel. The heat had to be repaired, but once that was done the room was first rate.
Friday, January 7, 2000
Petra was all we expected and more. We met Steve at the gate at 0800 hours and once we got in, we walked, hiked and climbed from one spectacular site to another for 8+ hours. The weather was cold, but perfectly clear. The letter from the Department of Antiquities got us in for 1 dinar rather than the normal 20 dinar entry fee. Fueled by a great breakfast buffet at the hotel, we went with barely a break. We didn’t see it all, and will probably come back with the next field school group arriving for the second dig. I joined a bunch of our people for the buffet dinner at the Mövenpick, and then went to an internet café where I checked my email for the first time in over 3 weeks.
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