by Roleen Sevillena
A: archaeologist smile. The sunburnt line found on one’s lower back after days of digging in the sun with a shirt that’s not long enough to cover a digger’s back while bending down. Friendliness of the smile depends on the person’s bending angle and size of shirt. Consult Neil for further inquiries on having an archaeologist smile.
B: Black Ram. The cheap rum found at the Bulgarian market. Lasts no longer than 2 days in the hands of EBAPers. Also the inspiration for Brandon’s nicknames: Black Ramage and Ol’ Black Joe (must hear Brandon and Joe talk in the same room for more clarity on the latter nickname).
C: cleaning pottery. A Monday to Friday routine that starts at 5pm after siesta time. Starts with bagging previously washed pottery and piling them on top of the unprocessed bags of sherds in the garden. Can often feel overwhelming, especially with the no-alcohol rule and when small votive cup sherds are involved… But with good EBAP company and power house cleaning all can be done with ouzo hour time to spare.
D: dumpy(saurus) level. The rugged wooden surveying station used to find ‘Giulianna points’. Her points refer to elevations of features used in her trench drawings. 99% of the time manned by Kyle. Those on site should not be alarmed when he yells numbers, as he does not mean to in an aggressive manner. The antiquity of this object has created an eruption of jokes and has brought about the creation of a mythical figure, Don P.
E: extreme cars. Aka the bumper cars found at the Dilesi carnival. A great way to release any inhibited stress and/or anger. When EBAPers grab hold of the wheels a good time is always guaranteed. No mercy given.
F: frappesand caffeine in general. Often made and drank in the morning for the 6am departure time. The hip thing among EBAPers has been to drink morning coffees in Mason jars from My Market. During work sessions at Café Contigo, frappes are a good way to cool down and to get a splurge of caffeine in nap-deprived EBAPers (unless they decide to go the free chips route and order a beer instead).
G: Greek yogurt. Common breakfast essential for EBAPers. Found in almost every refrigerator. Often eaten with honey and/or fruit. Also used to make a face mask during the girl’s spa days. Dries up nicely and leaves skin smooth with a nice glow.
H: hill slope toilet. After the much contested IKEA storage closet toilet idea fell through the only ‘washroom’ area available to EBAPers is the northern hill slope. Nice directive path and toilet paper present. Privacy minimally guaranteed. Must clean up after one’s self or Bryan will hunt you down.
I: ice cream. A refreshing treat to beat the heat. Hot spot in Dilesi: Byzantino. Where EBAPers are known to enter in crowds and order anything from pistachio, mastika and sour cherry and chocolate ice cream. Also became the common dessert to celebrate EBAP birthdays.
J: Joe’s sun shades. Can also be referred to as life-saving apparatuses out in the field. Made with metal rods, thick green mesh and rope. Not only mobile and easy to move, but also resistant to breaking in windy conditions. Reduces the likelihood of EBAPers getting heat stroke from the blazing hot sun.
K: Kyria Mamoni. Our most gracious host in Dilesi, allowing the craziness of EBAP reside in her apartments. Thankful for her hospitality and kindness from being greeted from her balcony. R.I.P. Mrs. Mamoni.
L: lunchtime. Arguably one of the best parts of the work day. When Stavroula is in charge of the menu anything is possible. From various legume soups, pastitsio, seasoned veggies, to hard-boiled eggs and tuna… lunch at Stavroula’s is always a meal to look forward to. And one cannot forget about the refreshing salads, fresh bread and ice cold water served at every outdoor lunch.
M: mosquitoes. The sneaky blood suckers of Greece. They manage to bite without you noticing them. Can leave scars on your skin even a year after being bitten. Consult Lauren for mosquito precautions and to learn about every possible method of trying not to get mosquito bites.
N: nighttime beach excursions. After a relatively late (by North American standards) and satisfying supper, beach time becomes a favourable pre-hit-the-bed option. Whether it’s taking a nice stroll, night swimming, or going as a big group to hang out with a few drinks in hand, the advantages of living by the sea are reaped by all.
O: ouzo hour. The time before 8pm dinners where EBAPers convene and drink. Snacks also present. Eg. Crusti Crocs, Fonzies, pumpkin seeds, Bulgarian pretzel sticks and Brenden’s famous popcorn. All drinks acceptable but ouzo always seems to be present, however must be prepared accordingly: first ouzo, then water, and then ice to top it off.
P: pep. Short for pepperoni found at the Bulgarian market. Also a nickname for the EBAP man known to eating excessive amounts of this sausage, Joe.
Q: questionable theories. Also known to EBAPers as ‘purple ideas’. Such ideas often voiced by Giulianna, which usually pertain to the existence of Italian pizzarias in Ancient Eleon.
R: rainy days. The 2 days of rain in week 2 of EBAP, where such unusual weather conditions threw everyone’s schedule out of whack. Having the start time moved to 8:30 instead of 6:30 EBAPers knew it would be an unordinary work day. The days consisted of visiting the Schimatari museum, exploring the walls on site, hanging out and playing Anti-Monopoly in the Arma café, learning about archaeological illustration in the apotheke (storehouse), and with some EBAPers opening new trenches in the rain.
S: sitting tree. The largest bush-tree found on site where all tools and supplies are tarped and chained up at the end of the day. Also where EBAPers take refuge for shade during breaktime on the tarps.
T: trench tours. An essential practice during the work week which gives trenches the chance to show their fellow EBAPers cool finds, features and overall progress. Mostly given by trench supervisors but not unusual to have students give such tours, especially if being graded by Brenden.
U: unwanted discoveries. Such discoveries range from undiagnostic pottery sherds smaller than one’s thumbnail, surface finds around the site, and good looking/deceiving rocks. Discoveries of the sort differ from ones that are highly frowned upon to keep… such as excess amounts of tile, mud brick and Byzantine finds.
V: vulnerable strays. Often cats and dogs around Greece. Fates of such animals vary but are usually grim unless they quickly learn survival skills or catch the attention of EBAPers which are much more sympathetic to strays than most Greeks. A favourite dog of this year being Biscuit.
W: water. Pronounced wah-ter (or wah-dur, depending on what kind of American you’re talking to). The quintessential thirst quencher in the hot Greek sun. Arguably the runner up next to beer. Mostly found in 1.5 or 2L plastic bottles on site and in most of Greece due to the lack of metal-less drinking water. Eg. Dirfy’s. The water brand often served at Bobby’s taverna. Named after Mount Dirfy, which can be seen across the water. Also known as the Dirf.
X: xenia. In the simplest terms means hospitality. Which doesn’t even come close to describing the way EBAPers have been treated in Boeotia. EBAP probably wouldn’t be the same without the hospitality of Mrs. Mamoni, tavernas around Dilesi and Stravroula in Arma.
Y: yoga. A good way to stretch out after all the movement and toil from digging in the field. Only one yoga session has occurred on site this season, but nonetheless memorable. To see pictures of Ancient Eleon yoga contact Morgan.
Z: zambili. Black rubber containers used on site to haul dirt, weeds and anything else needed to be brought to a wheelbarrow or western dirt pile. Come in various sizes and weights. Lighter zambilis often fought for by trenches since the 4 handled ones feel as though a bucket of tiles have initially been put into them.