Saturday, November 03, 2007

Almost there … Almost there …

Now if only the TIE Fighters won’t shoot me from behind.

The clearing of the fancy grid squares of Xtobo was semi-officially finished on Friday afternoon. There are a few spots that need to be double checked or expanded upon, but we are very very close. The mapping process is running a few structures behind the clearing, but in short the process of mapping the site of Xtobo should be wrapped up by Monday or Tuesday. There will still be some data manipulation to be done, and of course the map will have to be redrawn to fit what I wanted to the site to look like, but the good news is we are almost there!

The mapping process has been both incredible and trying on a daily basis. We found far more buildings buried in the forest then I had originally speculated (the final tally will be around 360 or so). We also found many more pozos, or ground wells, then I had expected, which particularly helps to explain how the population could have survived here. What was once thought to be two peripheral sacbes has become some sort of defined open plaza that will likely keep me scratching my head for decades to come. And of course there was the constant battle with the creatures of the monte. Five and a half snakes were dispatched with (one corral snake was in the process of eating another corral snake, thus the half a snake). At least three colonies of Africanos (Killer Bees) were side stepped. Scott was stung by a scorpion. Juan Balam received a dose of Chechem sap in his eye. And Dan was given a black eye by an ant measuring about 2 millimeters long. But we are all still standing, and the map data has been backed up … twice.

The fight is hardly over though. Once the map has been finished we will transition to excavations. These will be a relatively minor affair for this season. There will be no grand tunnels dug into the pyramids, or massive horizontal clearings. Instead we will be digging small trenches along side a series of structures in hopes of finding the long discarded garbage piles of Xtobo’s residents. Garbage is the true “gold” of archaeology and will allow us a much greater understanding of the lives of these people. We’re not quite there yet, but I’m sure Han will be clearing the way for us any minute now.

P.S. Bonus points for anyone who can tell me what the TIE acronym stands for without looking it up!


Blogger Candy Griffin said...

twin ion engine!

12:22 PM  
Blogger Mix Tu'ux said...

Kudos to Candy! Your certificate of achievment is in the mail (but seeing as its the Mexican Postal Service you may not want to hold your breath).

7:57 PM  

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