My apologies for the delay in the Athens post. I had written it in the car ride from Athens to Narthaki, and have had limited internet since then. In other words, I’ve been truly enjoying my time in this amazing little village and trying to partake in learning, exploring, and experiencing as much as I can.
According to Wikipedia, this village has
Our group is separated into four different areas. Margriet, Collet and Laura are in one house, the girls are in the old school house (no longer active), the boys are in the old soccer clubhouse, and the senior grad student females are in in a separate house, myself included. It’s very weird to be at a field school with essentially my own bedroom, a daybed, and a shower shared only between 3-4 people. The village has a Taverna that we eat at every night, and an Ouzeri that we go to during siesta/pre-dinner for drinks and wifi (and gelato). All of our work is done at the Apothiki, which is a building behind the elementary school that still has students. To walk from one building to the other takes less than 5 minutes, with the furthest
walk being between my house and the girls’ schoolhouse, which may be 10 minutes? With it being such a small village, we really can walk everywhere. All those with fitbits on our trip joke that they aren’t getting enough steps; this is likely due to how short walking trips are between each building.
Our working hours and daily routine is very European. It has been modified a bit since none of the students are here yet, but the average one will be more or less like this:
7:00am – Breakfast (at the Apothiki); breakfast includes fresh pastries from the bakery, Greek yogurt, honey, granola, and fruit (currently we have had kiwi, bananas, and apples).
7:30am – Work at the Apothiki on different things. It consists of two separate areas (A and B) with large working spaces, many boxes of artefacts, and relatively good lighting. I have an area in Apothiki A, which includes a large table (at the top of a U-shape), a comfortable chair, and about 12 crates of materials. I have my work cut out for me. Once the students arrive we will also have our respective modules. I will be teaching in the mornings
for Week 2, so I have some time to determine what I will do with the students. Apothiki B has other tables and a lot of the “reconstructive” workers, a small fridge, more stored materials, and a water-closet/sink area. The area outside of the Apothiki will have tables and chairs set up for the 16-18 students to have their lecture stations and to work with materials. I am excited to see how it works, and will find out soon.
11:00am – Coffee Break: instant coffee, but it’s a nice break to have a biscuit, go for fresh air outside, and socialize with those not working in my side of the Apothiki.
11:30-2:00 we continue working on our materials and another teaching session will occur.
2:00 is lunch, which is usually sandwiches and fruit at the Apothiki. Most often this will occur outside but today was inside because of the downpouring.
Siesta occurs once lunch is done and until 5:00pm. On Saturdays we stop working after lunch. Monday through Friday we go back to work from 5-7pm. Sundays we take off to go to a beach or to explore (or do chores).
We have dinner at
the taverna at 8:30pm, so we have another hour and a half after finishing working to nap, shower, or just recover prior to the wine and deliciousness that is dinner.
The Taverna is a wonderful family-run event that is quite large and can accommodate us as well as other small local groups of men. Wine is 2.5E for a 0.5L and we often split it amongst our groups, taking turns to buy it each night. We take our orders according to whether it is Grill night (there are usually 4 or 5 options), pasta night just has variations according to vegetarian, lactose-free, or with-meat. I haven’t had any of the other options yet but will likely write a full-food blog once I have the chance. The meal usually starts with fresh bread and different types of salads.
I have only had a few chances to check out parts of the villages, but have already seen shepherds and their flocks up in the mountains and in the small patches of grazing grounds in the village. I have had the chance to go through some of my materials and already complete the analysis for the one human burial. I got
the opportunity to give a guest lecture to our group on my findings and what this could mean for the larger picture, and where I hope to go with it next. I get to start working with the animal bones on Monday and will likely give my same burial schpeel to the students Monday morning while the bones are still laying out. Margriet has also asked me to give a similar talk at our public lecture in Farsala, so I guess this means I need to start translating my findings into Greek… no pressure at all.
I continuously find myself caught up in how peaceful it feels here. It feels like home already and I’m just over 48 hours in. I’m excited by what I have already been able to accomplish and really look forward to continuing my work with the materials, my exploration of the community and what secrets it holds, and trying all of the amazing food options at the Taverna. I’ll try and send some more updates soon, but need to get some of my own work done. We have many many weeks to go thank goodness, but I hope that these little teasers will suffice.
I am really happy that I decided to do the travel blog. Not only does it help me (and my shoddy memory) recount a lot of the great things I’ve been able to do so far, but I’m keeping up with my writing. It’s not much, and I’m sure the run on sentences in my head don’t translate well, but it’s a start. And it keeps me fresh. I’ve also never been one for siesta so it keeps me actively involved.
If we aren’t swept away in all this rain, I’ll send a foodie update soon!
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