Actually I get a caravan.
Perhaps I'm being a bit sensitive, but I can't help thinking that Kevin
seems to be suggesting that I'm hoodwinking someone, engaged in some sort of
scam, or bringing the profession into disrepute, my apologies if that isn't
the case Kevin.
As far as I'm aware I'll be receiving about £2000 as an expenses
payment, to cover three months work on site. That will just about cover my
mortgage, bills etc, but I'm sure that just like last year I'll end up out
of pocket. I think that makes me an idealistic fool rather than some sort of
threat to professional archaeology, and I don't care if the payment's called
a wage or an expenses. But then I'm not doing it for the money, and no one
forced me into archaeology at the barrel of a gun. But I've done something
different in attempt to rectify a problem I've observed rather than just
sitting around moaning about how no one was doing anything.
Earlier on today I wrote a long piece about how I believed that the main
problem in professional archaeology was a general under swell of resentment
and apathy towards anyone or any organisation who was perceived to be
attempting to improve the general position of archaeology, i.e. the IFA,
Prospect, APPAG etc, but then after receiving some bad personal news
couldn't be bothered to send it...rather illustrating my own point.
I don't know about anyone else on the list, but the reason I entered
into professional archaeology was a deep passion, almost excitement, about
the subject, and fully aware that I was never going to be driving a BMW,
(except at Bamburgh of course where we have three each) rather it was going
to be a struggle. Within five years I'd have to say that had swiftly
departed, to be replaced with just such feelings of resentment and apathy as
I've outlined above as I struggled to make a living, and personally, it was
only through working at Bamburgh that I actually rediscovered why I decided
to inflict archaeology on myself. I'm not going to repeat myself again about
the project, there appears to have been a great deal of positive feedback as
My working on a busman's holiday isn't the threat to archaeology the
profession should be looking at, but rather why we can't seem to get behind
the individuals and organisations that are attempting to drag it out of the
nineteenth century, of which I'm as guilty as anyone. Please now begin the
usual circular arguments about pay, conditions, IFA, amateur/professional,
time team etc.
Myself? I'm going to go and press that application button on the IFA
website again and actually send the thing in this time, attempt to do
something proactive in Prospect rather than just paying my sub, and
generally look forward to those racy nights in the caravan...