So, a nice update on what work has actually been done. I was initally assigned to sketch and draw the site we first visited and my professor liked it so much he wants me to just continue the job and has given me graph paper, measuring sticks, all of this stuff to draw and document illustrations for the work on the Galatian Hillforts. I have not taken any drafting classes etc, and I was told I should since I have a hand and an eye for drawing excavations and that if I continue and hone my skills I could very well have a future going from digs and sites drawing so I am kinda excited I just walked into this. Some of mine should be used for the work we are posting for my school so I will link it once it comes up which probably will not be for some weeks. Speaking of what we have found, we are amazed with how much pottery was found inside the main walls of the hillforts, and then alot around one side of it. We can tell where looting occured and where there has been none. Also, we are trying to really find out just where the Galatians lived, since all that remains IS the forts and we don't know if they moved around an area with wagons, used wooden houses or did they use the forts themselves all year round and not just as a time in emergency. But something amazing, we are finding a lot of lithic stuff which was something we were all caught of guard for and of all, a stone loom wieght. Now, this was found by chance, was made of a stone not native and was created in such a way that it needed high level of stone working and showed great advancement. We were all shocked as was Dr. Levent Vardar who may now have that particular site, Bayram, excavated. The place is a mess, since the fort is overgrown with trees and the walls are in shambles and rocks everywhere but the eviedence that there is so much lithic and stone tools and weapons raises so many questions. We've also been to Sabanozu and I can't remember the others but I shall post more when it comes avalible.
Ok, so I got my luggage like a day after my last update. I get a call from the security gate that it was dropped off in the middle of the night so me and a friend go to get it. It's a long, LONG trip but to keep things short, we end up getting picked up by Jandarma, which is the crack troops of Turkey. These guys offer us a lift, with the luggage, and they can't speak English and we can't speak Turkish but we can like use hand directions etc. The sgt. of the group was more interested in telling us how much American Women are hotter than Turkish Women and I wanted to disagree but I kept silent since all the guys in the back of the truck were smiling at me with thier rifles in hand. LoL. Um, we've done some siteseeing and actually stayed at a private villa just outside Soke for a couple nights so we could hit places like Priene, Heraklia, Ephesus etc. The villa was owned by a engineering prof at my school and he lent it to us for a couple days. I'll update you guys later on what work we've been doing etc and I must say Dr. Levent can DRINK and is awesome guy, he signs all the permits for digs in the country and is the head of the government archeology ministry or whatever and so we got to go to closed sites and get in other ones free. LoL. SO... I shall tell more later and I plan on trying to setup of a site so you can see all the videos I have made as well. L8r.
So here I am sitting at an internet cafe in Ankara... and I'm having fun but a little pissed off... mainly because Turkish Airlines LEFT my luggage in the USA... and I HOPEFULLY will have it by tomorrow...
Other than that... I must say that thus far... DAMN! Tis a very beautiful country where 8/9 or 10 women at random are very nice... so I am even more inclined to hit the bars tonight. Also, I've been taking so many pics and videos... and having a blast. Bilkent University is a huge campus and the temp, is great because up here in the mountains it is so different compared to my usual sea-level living. We should be hitting the field Friday... tomorrow I think we are hitting the museums at downtown Ankara... we all spent today sleeping since we had around 14hrs on a plane then 10 more hours of travel by land and we were smoked so...
Other than that... I must say I really like this country... the people, (thus far) have been really nice and the whole atmosphere is great. They drive like maniacs though... puts ANYTHING I have seen to shame... we were in a taxi yesterday and the driver is like... "It is very dangerous to drive in Turkey..." then suddenly he just sped up and was weaving in out of traffic on the highway... we all just buckled up and prayed... cause... you need to be REALLY aggressive to get anywhere here. I also found it odd and funny how I could buy a handgun for 55 lira and then get a haircut and eat at the same place... hahaha. So... I hope to add more sometime... but who knows. Till then... ttyl.
If you are reading this I am most likely either finishing up packing or on a plane out of the country going to Turkey. Some of you, know this already but this is for everyone... as of 1pm Central Time I will flying out of O'Hare International headed to JFK, then from NYC to Istanbul, (Not Constantinople), (+4 awesome points to whomever gets the reference first), and I will not be returning until July 10th.
I am going, along with a professor of mine and about 9 other students, to work alongside my Prof's collegue on Galatian Hillforts from the Hellenistic period in and around the city of Ankara. We will be covering, something like 50km worth of sites and a couple he just found in Cappadocia to the East of Ankara. Surveying and a little excavation as well as mapping for GPS satalites everything we find, (sites and such since no maps exist to date). Once that is done, we will travel to the Ionian Coast and Ephesus, Halicarnisus, Sardis and other sites and then into Caria to see some rural areas my Prof knows which were visited and sieged by Alexander the Great. From there after so many days, we'll head north to Illium, (Troy), then spend the last days in Nova Roma, Constantinople, Istanbul or Isargrad, depending on how you wish to view/call it. I plan to have A LOT of pictures, (I can take up to 1280 LoL). So... all, wish me luck and safe passage. I do look forward to seeing some of the greatest Mosques in all of Islam and seeing the greatest Christian Church ever constructed, (the Hagia Sophia), back in the 530's.
I may or may not have some time on the internet, since for a while we will be based at Bilkent University outside Ankara, and I would assume they have access. Also I am not sure how I will be spending the 4th of July....so... I need to think of how to celebrate our nation's B-Day when I am on the otherside of the world.
I hope to come back and be able to write up something for UNRV on what was accomplished and learned on such an elusive people...
Well... back to finishing the last of my packing... Salve!
I am submitting a paper on the Maccabee Revolt into my school's undergrad history jounral in hopes of it getting published so I have something really nice to present to a graduate school... I probably won't find out how I fare/ if it is accepted until the middle of Feburary...
Wish me luck...
Hmmm... perhaps some of you can relate and some can't but I am throwing this out there nonetheless.
After so many years at college, I have come to realize that tutition is near robbery, (meaning how they tack on an additional 10,000 just because I am out of state), but what's worse is Follets and textbooks. That SURELY is robbery, you pay $100-200 for a brand new textbook that, when you try to sell back they will either give you, $35 for even if it is in pristine condition or two... they won't take it back because a new edition, (which seems to come out every 6 months), will be released and they cannot take it. Having worked for UPS a few years ago and my job being loading the huge semi-trucks, I had the chance to come across Follets Boxes being shipped to my school.
I went to my current school for a year, left for a year to do core requirements at home at community college to save money, (at which time I worked for 13 months for UPS), and then went back to my current school.
Now, boxes come open all the time, and allow me to tell you, that packages are NOT treated well and having 'fragile' on the box almost guarentee's harm to it. But anyway, back to my story, a Follets box busted open, so I pulled it out of my truck and placed it on the side so it could be re-packaged. During break I just happened to go through for the hell of it, I was curious. I not only discovered that Follets not only ships to thier stores here, (obvious), but also supplies thier "competitors" as well, so there is only one source and not the competition or 'choices' were are led to believe on campus. Having discovered this irony I looked at the invoice in the box and saw they were some Chemistry Textbooks and Biology Textbooks, being sold at around $80 and $130 respectively. Now I could have guessed that being the prices, but when I looked at the what the actual cost of the books were from publication I was shocked. Each being $30 and $70 respectivally. Now, this just upsets me how books which come out are a decent price and over time or right from the start are marked up for whatever reasons other than draining more money from students who will have to buy a new textbook a year later.
Sorry all... had to vent a little on that since I have spent around $750 on books this semester alone.
The other night, I had the prvilige to hear a speech by General Wesley Clark, and then meet and speak with him. His speech, focusing on the Balkans and part of the overral series of speechs at my school concerning the issue of "Do we really care about human rights?" was an amazing thing. He spoke of the past relevancy, his personal experiences in and out of the military and washington and then went on to answer questions very detailed and thoroughly ranging from his speech, to Iraq, Iran, China and other major matters in US policy today. Hearing him speak, knowing his ideals and aspirations and then hearing his impressive record, I can't help but just remember during 03, how I had hoped he had won the Democratic Candidacy, and perhaps, part of me wishes he would have run independant...
Something I love is when you are taking a class in the first couple days you can tell if this is going to be an easy A = blow off class and those you can't. I've got about 2-3 of my 6 classes like that... I just hope I can survive my one class. That being my one political science class, (I made a tread in the after hours section), because of my frustration with the instructor. But it is always good to know you can drag ass in some classes and concentrate on the harder ones and still pull the good grades...
Also... I realize if I drink a couple beers before my power hour classes I am really relaxed and take a ***** load more notes... so... I need to go out and buy more Killians...
I'm trucking on despite my complete lack of sleep...
On a totally different topic, has anyone ever read this book? .
If so can you tell me how it is, cause I am kinda cautious to get it... thanks for any info.
So I have 3 Power Hours on T and Th. Power Hour being a class that is an hour and fifteen minutes long and which are spread out throughout the day and here I am up and online, mainly cause I can't sleep, partially cause I just finished a great book and have an urge to start another and also because it's only the 4th day of classes, (2nd techincally for the ones I have only on Tues and Thurs), so I kinda don't care.
More to follow soon... I am currently downing a Red Bull and debatting on a bottle of Killians... though I think I'll just stick to the book and the Red Bull right now.