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DAY SEVEN – LANCEFIELD DIG – IT ALWAYS ENDS WITH TEARS!

The final day of the dig! We are all tired, sore, a little cranky……and in some ways the last day of the dig is always the longest! The final day entails filling in all the trenches (with precise excavating!), bagging and cataloguing the artefacts, washing and packing away the equipment, returning the infamous portaloo (the crapper!), and making sure the dig site has been rehabilitated and left in a somewhat better condition than when we started. There was a flurry of activity trying to get the last of the sieving completed! Directions from the Archeos was to keep sieving buckets […]

DAY SIX – LANCEFIELD DIG – LANCEFIELD MEGAFAUNA FESTIVAL

After a very late night (hic!) and a VERY early morning (hello keep cup with very strong tea bag!) we travelled back to Lancefield to help prepare for the big event of the Lancefield Megafauna Festival. Every year the township of Lancefield embraces it’s unique history and celebrates the fact that, basically, the town is one big treasure trove of Paleontological artefacts and wherever you dig you are likely to find bone from animals that have been extinct for thousands of years! It’s great! They transform the main township into a market festival with performances, food, and all sorts of […]

DAY FIVE – LANCEFIELD DIG – FEELING TORN BETWEEN DIRT AND RESPONSIBILITY

Today, I could only spend half a day in the field, as my second eldest son, Jason, graduated from Secondary School. Apparently that’s a big deal, so big that a graduation ceremony and dinner had been planned. But there was an open bar so I was partially sated….. So, thinking I would be having to shower before the big Shindig anyway, I decided to try my hand at sieving! Now sieving is what we geos refer to as a “Right of Passage”. Most fieldies will have known the pain of being bent over a bucket trying to push rocks through a […]

DAY FOUR – LANCEFIELD DIG – LOTS OF DIRT AND BONE

Oh….my……gawd! I had the BEST day in the many BESTEST days I’ve ever had since falling in love with rocks! After rushing around and doing all my jobs to ensure the welfare and comfort of all my volunteers (I take my job very seriously with chocolate zucchini cake – the green bits are NOT those kind of green bits – and giant Anzac cookies), I made my way over to the dig site. Immediately I launched myself upon the mounds that have yielded bone and teeth and began scrambling through dirt, clay and who knows what (could be million year […]

DAY THREE – LANCEFIELD DIG – I’M BACK!

So, I went to the Doctor and after being pumped full of drugs I got the all clear to come back to the dig site…..(actually I begged and pleaded and made promises of resting lots and making sure I didn’t overdo it…..yeah right!). Upon arriving back on site the weather was so inclement that the crew had called it a day. It was cold, wet and bitter – to the point people’s fingers didn’t work anymore. So instead of an active dig site, I walked into the common room full of scientists all doing their second most favourite thing! Drinking! […]

DAY TWO – LANCEFIELD – TEARS AND TANTRUMS

I slept badly…..like really badly which is bad because I am usually a bad sleeper…… I knew something was wrong but I didn’t want to admit it. Until I started getting really sick! And I couldn’t hide it from everyone. So I had to go home. Leave the dig site. Leave Lancefield and just go home. And I cried….and cried……and yelled and screamed……I had worked so hard helping to organise this week and now I have to miss out on things because I got sick! But, I pulled up my big-girl pants and did what I needed to. I went […]

DAY ONE – LANCEFIELD DIG

Hello Everyone and a huge, warm welcome from a very warm Lancefield, Victoria. Today marks the beginning of a week long adventure of epic proportions featuring the combined superpowers of the Deakin University Palaeontology crew, the Latrobe University Archeology crew, Monash University Earth, Atmosphere and Environment crew, and the Federation University Palynologist crew (Cam called them Beeople!). Lancefield is a small Victorian town famous for megafauna, which means that Lancefield is a small Victorian town famous for it’s capacity to host lots of lots of scientists who regularly descend on it to dig megafauna! And it’s so much fun…… This week […]

DAY FIVE – HOMEWARD BOUND

With an early start at 6am, the intrepid travellers (my long-suffering mentor driving and my sleepy geologist friend navigating) departed the infamous town of Trundle, finishing up our exploration trek of Fifield and Syerston. It was with a heavy heart that we said goodbye (again!) to Middy the pub dog and the gorgeous publican (soon to be Masters student in Education – go you!) Danielle, and drove into the wild blue yonder…….well……we drove south! After about 20 minutes of travelling we came across a roadside outcrop (have I mentioned how much I LOVE roadside cuttings – they are just AWESOME! […]

DAY FOUR – AREA 1 SYERSTON

    Day four began in glorious weather – with a “proof of life” selfie taken and posted to Facebook so my Dear Old Dad knew I was alive and well! I was most excited about today as my Long-Suffering Mentor had gained permission from the boss to take us out for breakfast to a very special place! And so began a small (by outback standards!) drive to Parkes, NSW.       You see lots of odd things in country Australia but nothing as odd as an Elvis on a Ute……holding a chainsaw…… We travelled for about three quarters of […]

DAY THREE – FIFIELD

The day began at 7.30am once again, after rising to another sensational sunrise through my window at the Trundle Pub. Immediately, we set off towards Fifield again, this time heading toward “Area 1” – our designated tenement. The terrain was very different to our sampling areas of yesterday – a lot more trees and bush-like vegetation. There were lots of Big Grey Kangaroos and we even saw a Swamp Wallaby complete with joey in her pouch.   Stopping for a sample, we bush bashed maybe 250 metres into heavy scrub and dense vegetation only to turn around and see a […]