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April 17, 1981 - Image 24

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1981-04-17
Note:
This is a tabloid page

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.


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Page 6-Friday, April 17, 1981-The Michigan Daily

STUDENTS LOOK AT one of the walls uncovered in the archaeological dig
at the ancient city of Wroxeter, England. The dig has been going on for
nearly four decades.

cluded a variety of guest lecturers in
different specialized fields of ar-
chaeological research.
WE WERE TO try and use the
remaining time each night to prepare
two presentations involving our field
work to be given at the end of our two-
week stay. Sixteen leary-eyed students
left the classroom that first evening
wondering, "When will I have time to
breath?"
That night we stayed up until 4 a.m.
in anxious conversation. Two-hours-
and-forty-five minutes later the 16 of us
sat slumped over the breakfast table
wishing for our lumpy beds.
Nevertheless, by 8:20 we were stan-
ding amidst the Roman City of
Wroxeter awake and awaiting instruc-
tions.
THE AREA UNDER excavation was
actually only a small portion of an en-
tire Roman fortress spanning many
acres under present day farmland. The
fort was first discovered in 1948 by
Prof. J. St. Joseph during aerial
reconaissance (photos taken by plane).
The archaeologists were looking at
places of military demolition and
reconstruction of early towns built soon
after the year 90 A.D. These early
structures had ben in turn destroyed
to make way for the Hadrianic
development.
Forty years ago several feet of far-
mland had to be removed by plow
before diggers could even begin their
research. Now the work concentrates
within a large basilica (Roman bath
house) and the macellum (meat
market), site of most of the earlier tim-
ber buildings.
These buildings, part of the city of
Wroxeter, were destroyed between 350
and 500 A.D. Wroxeter is an example of

D...
(Continued from Page 5)
tained, providing proper division of the
sexes.
In all, eight females and eight males
shared one tub, six sinks, and a single
toilet complete with a chain pull frgm
the ceiling. We were later relieved to
find several accessable toilets on the
first and second floors.
THAT FIRST EVENING 16 of us met
in a first floor classroom to become
acquainted with Dr. Webster and field

advisor Tim Strickland. Our schedule
was outlined:
" Breakfast at 6:45 a.m.;
" Departure for Wroxeter at 8 a.m.
(20 minutes away from the college) by
carpool;
" Morning tea served at 10:30 a.m.
for 20 minutes;
" Lunch for an hour at 12:30;
" Afternoon tea served at 3:30 for 20
minutes;
" Departure for home at 6, dinner at
7;
* There was also a two-hour seminar
every evening at 8. These seminars in-

a Roman-Britain city with a minor
ruler struggling for control of the
kingdom.
THREE STUDENTS, including
myself, were instructed to work just
east of the meat market. We were to
trowel away several layers of soil to
uncover a pebbled flooring.
So we spent the first hour ... learning
how to trowel. Small brushes, small
shovels, buckets and sieves were used
throughout the first day. Every layer
we troweled away had a number,
everything within a layer had a number
(bones, building materials, etc), and
everything went down in detail in a site
report book.
We were instructed to notice color
differences in soils; what was once a
wood post within a hole or the colors of
limestone and building materials such
as crumbled mortar.
AFTER OUR FLOORING was
cleared away, a grid was laid and the
ground squared-off with string for a
scaled drawing. We were to draw ab-
solutely every detail possible, ruler in
hand. Then a camera crew set up a
tripod for pictures.
For themost part, I spent seven
hours a day on my hands and knees
unless it way my turn for tea duty.
Back in a small wooden hut away
from the work area, tea was brewed
three times a day. Under Dr. Webster's
implicit instructions, at least three
gallons of 'water must boil for 20
minutes in a large urn. Tea was then
added to steep for 15 minutes, and a
collection of unmatched cups were set
out with platefuls of biscuits and cakes
brought that morning from the
college's kitchen. It always seemed a
bit ridiculous that everyone attending
this ritual would be wearing dirty jeans
Continued on Page 14

Yucatan ...
'Continued from Page71
be very good. We drank it with lemon
juice carefully squeezed into the neck of
the bottle, with a little salt added.
Lemons are green in
Mexico-Mexicans haven't gotten
around to believing that they have to
dye their citrus fruits for them to taste
good.
The following day we headed to the
Mayan ruin. The ruin impressed
me-but then, it was my first ruin. It is
what is left of an observatory and is set
atop wild and rocky cliffs. The climb
was both long and hot. We stopped after
that to get something to drink at the
friendly neighborhood McMaya.
(Nothing like this is found in the United
States-the word "quaint" can be ap-
plied here.)
We were due in the Yucatan capital,
Merida, that evening at 6. The ferry,
scheduled to leave at 2 p.m., left at
about 2:30. Schedules are all Mexico*
time-whenever they get around to it.
A WORD ABOUT GETTING
around Mexico. Trains are, well, forget
trains. They take too long and only
pushy people are lucky enough to get a
seat:
The wayto travel is by bus. There are
two classes of bus: First and second.
First class offers a bathroom on board
and air conditioning. Second class
buses offer rolling transportation. As
many people as possible are packed in-
to the bus-standing, sitting, or balan-
ced on one leg.
Gringos call them chicken buses, sin-
ce in the remoter areas, chickens and
people share seats.
WE ARRIVED IN Merida about 8:30
that evening and negotiated a trip to
our hotel with a taxi driver. A rule of
thumb: Always negotiate the cost of the
trip with the taxi driver before getting
into the taxi. Once quoted, the price
can't be changed. It's perfectly legal
for the driver to charge the gringo
suckers in his cab whatever he chooses
if the price is not settled.
Every Mexican town has a zocalo, a.
park surrounded by a church and
shops. It is the gathering place of each
city or village's residents and is usually
in the downtown section. The zocalo in
Merida is famous for its lemon-colored
cathedral, taking up one block of the
street siding the zocalo.
This cathedral has an interesting
story. It wasn't destined for Merida at
all. It was supposed to be built in Lima,
Peru and a smaller one built in Merida.
But somehow, the plans were mixed up

CHAC MOOL IS a rain god, much sacrificed to in ancient times. The
statue is found all over the Yucatan Peninsula. He holds a bowl on his
belly, and in this bowl, hearts of sacrificed warriors were placed to please
Chac Mool and bring on rain.

The Michigan Daily-Friday, A
WE WAITE
bus to Campec
bean coast. It
Big and spraw
It is one of the
this region si
southern oil fie

The next n
Palenque at a
located in th
Madres del Si
Philodendrons
The colors are
in bloom; bir
everywhere;
flowers. Palen
Its main atti
ruins five min
In Palenque
Quebec. And
reason-apar
this place is
Trail. Magic
wild in the mo
WE WENT'I
we paid five p
driver. He's a
be able to ha
quite well.
After the ex
ready for a b
Progreso, on I
bus trip from
long, clean, a
pretty much t
Later in the
the coast. The
and further al
is divided by
pruned into
people. The c
this year rour
will be no one
THE FOLL
Chitzen-itza,
Mool and the
Mool is a rain
ancient times
Yucatan in e
form. He hok
ting in an a'
bowl, the h
Contir

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Aff7..

Ar.

-f'
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line of attractive, durable ba
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tote and shoulder bags - frog
At University Cellar discount1

ur complete
ckpacks,
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i.

(Amateur and Commercial Photofinishing)
1-DAYCOLOR PRINTS
IN BY 9:00
OUT BY 5:30
2-DAY DUPLICATE SLIDES
3-DAY ENLARGEMENTS
IN COLOR AND BLACK & WHITE
UP TO 11x 14
4-HOUR SLIDES
IN BEFORE 9:00 OR 1:00
OUT BY 1:00 OR 5:00
E6 PROCESS ONLY

and Peruvians ended up with a much
smaller cathedral than they had
bargained for. And it really is lemon-
colored,
WHEN ENTERING CHURCHES in
Mexico, women should wear skirts and
men, long pants. Easy-going
Catholicism hasn't reached Latin
America yet.
The following day we headed for El
Mercado (The Market). I wanted to buy
a Panama hat, since my nose was
frying, and Panama hats are not made
in Panama but the Yucatan.
El Mercado is a huge collection of
food, houseware, clothing, jewelry, and
shoe stores crammed into two floors
and several outlying buildings of a
three-block area. Mayans bring their
wares to the market to sell. It's a
maze-things are found by chance.
We wandered there for hours. I
bought my hat (you can fold it, shape it
any way you want, sit on it, jump on it,
and it still retains its shape). They're
made in damp caves along the coast of
the Yucatan. The main attractions for
tourists at the market are hammocks,
hats, and baskets. They are all made of
henequen, a spiky plant grown for hun-
dreds of square miles in the Yucatan.
HAMMOCKS COME IN single,
double, and matrimonial sizes.
Matrimonials are huge-entire
families can sleep in one. Guidebooks
give instructions on how to tell them

apart; each size has a specific number
of end strings, and a vendor will try to
sell a double and call it a matrimonial
unless the strings are first counted.
They come in all colors and are one of
the best buys in Merida.
We headed for Palenque next and
visited Uxmal en route. Uxmal is a
large collection of Mayan ruins, of what
was once a temple city. The ancient
Mayans believed in human sacrifice,
although it didn't originate with them
but with the Aztecs of northern Mexico.
There are two pyramids to climb at
risk of life, limb, and heart. The steps
are about seven inches wide and a foot
high, and there is a chair to cling to
while climbing. The result is well worth
the effort. The view from the top is-to
use a cliche-breathtaking. The entire
temple city was spread about me, and I
could see miles in all directions.

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