Cosa Day 4
We have been working for 4 days now on site and things are progressing smoothly. There are 5 excavation units open now. Sophie arrived yesterday and opened the most recent unit. We are working mostly south of the extant surface remains and in between the previous years excavations. Andrea has removed the back fill soil and started work in the possible pump room uncovered last year. Allison is working next to her trench from last season and has extended towards the road, she is hoping to clarify the interface between the road and the entrance. We are all excited to see what else she finds, her unit so far has been the most productive in terms of artifacts and features. Ann, Anna, and Sophie all have units that hopefully will reveal some interior walls. So far Ann has come onto the top of one wall. Anna's trench hasn't shown much yet beyond a spread of collapsed wall, but we will continue to persevere despite having a very open and empty trench. Sophie's trench got through top soil today and will start to reveal more secrets in the coming days.
In addition to our daily schedule, we stopped work early today to visit the two Italian conservators (Bettina and Laura) who are working in the Villa of Diana, a house excavated in the 90s. They are trying to conserve the frescoes that surround the little shrine in the back of the house. They were previously covered with geotextile (a cloth) and wood. The frescoes have unfortunately become detached during the intervening years. Bettina explained what they were doing, while Laura demonstrated it. For any of the fresco pieces that had become detached, they will remove the old mortar which they will then replace it with new mortar. For some of the other pieces they merely had to injected a bonding compound to help strengthen the mortar that is there.
It is amazing what they are doing to help preserve these amazing finds for future visitors of the site. They are hoping to also come back and help us with our own conservation.