It was really lovely to have my parents visit me in Paphos. I've been on a couple of other excavations overseas and sent many emails to them, explaining what I was getting up to so it was really amazing to have them here so they could see exactly where I was digging, who I was digging with and how it all worked. They came and visited me on site at the Theatre and I attempted to remember at least some of the information that Craig had relayed the day before, and I hope I sounded as convincing as the Segway tour guides who stop by the site every day (although we usually have to bite our tongues as not all of their facts are correct!). My parents had a bit of a wander around the site and, conveniently, took some photos of me and other trench members sitting down and staring at a wall (I swear we were drawing a section!) . One of the best things about them visiting, besides their lovely presence, was that they had a car, yay! We drove around one day and visited Aphrodite's beautiful birth place. Memories include squeezing past half naked Russians in a very narrow pedestrian underpass and struggling over the pebbled beach (it was still very beautiful!). We also drove to Kourion to see the restored theatre which was very impressive (although I may be biased in saying that our Paphos one is better). Another day we headed to Polis and had some unbelievably fresh and delicious sea bream, and then we drove off into the Troodos Mountains and marvelled at the amazing scenery Cyprus has to offer.
What I really did love about mum and dad visiting though was that they got to see what I really love doing - digging a big hole somewhere in the Mediterranean. They also got to meet all the amazing people I get to do it with. Everyone has been so welcoming, and having a relatively small team of about 20-25 people means that we all get to chat and get to know one another. There are some familiar faces from Zagora, which is a site I was on a couple of years ago, so it's been really fun sharing stories from there as well as hearing many more from other wonderful sites around the world! This season I'm in trench 16 D, which is down the bottom of the theatre and we're digging down looking for the Roman road (and coming across huge rock tumble and a modern wall!). Not only is the fact that we're looking for a Roman road really cool, but I get to do it with Adam Carr as my trench supervisor who was also with me in Zagora, which brings back good memories and lots of stories - including the nickname 'Blanket' which I got on a particularly cold morning on the mini bus to site and is catching on here as quickly as it did there.
So one week in and I'm having a really brilliant time! The smell of cooking food is growing stronger, I'm sending mum and dad regular updates on the trench and my muscles are not as sore as I thought they would be (again I swear I've been doing much more than staring at a wall!).
Photo: The team having dinner on site