Although I was looking forward to a soaking tub, massage and feeling dry, I was also saddened to be leaving. Would I ever know what structure 24 was that I had been digging in? We had not aged it or determined its use by the time I left. In the original 3 by 3 meter digging, we had found a plaster floor and some walls so the structure was expanded another 3 by 3 meters. We found higher floor and walls and it was decided to follow the walls. There was some conjecture that it was connected to the pyramid next to it which was also being excavated. I wanted to stay! I would also not be there for the excavation of a burial that would be excavated in the next session by the group taking the Laboratory and Field Methods: Bioarchaeology course. There was so much more to learn and observe.
Would I go again? In a heartbeat!! But I can’t imagine that I will since I have so many other places I want to see and volunteer opportunities I want to do with limited funds. It was the experience of a lifetime and as Dr. Guderjan said in our orientation, “we were creating knowledge”.
For those of you who might be interested and/or would like to see other photos of the 2018 archaeological dig, you can view the Facebook page of the Maya Research Program, a nonprofit organization associated with the University of Texas at Tyler.