Day 23

After our media frenzy, we are deluged with visitors. It is a matter of great regret that we have run out of plastic swords to sell them. All want to see the famous Caistor mystery man but sadly he has been spirited away to an undisclosed location. We have the pictures of his starring moment in the EDP so that has to do. More than 300 visitors come and the director is interviewed by a very attractive lady from Radio 4, thereby demonstrating that archaeology does have some minor perks.

Sue Harman considerably ups the ante on the cake front by creating a spectacular Caistor 2009 cake, complete with Lego centurion (see below). This is demolished by the eager diggers at lunchtime, just before the cherry picker comes, courtesy of May Gurney and the splendid Mike Dixon of A Plant. The director is hoisted skywards and instantly turns into Cecil B. De Mille, arranging his staff as if they were extras in a biblical epic. It’s a great view and the guy driving the cherry picker is helpfulness personified, cheered by the fact that he gets to see skeletons from 30 feet up rather than fixing street lights.

Trench 2 in all its aerial glory.

Trench 2 in all its aerial glory.

Onwards and upwards...

Onwards and upwards...

On the archaeology front, the cremation in trench 1 gets lifted. It seems to have been in a wooden box, or at least there are a lot of nails involved. In the church trench meanwhile, the world of ancient Rome is conclusively reached, as is the natural sand, which is always something of a relief. At the bottom of a little gulley is a splendid coin of Constantine (Urbs Roma with Romulus and Remus suckling at the wolf, which is about as Roman as it gets).

Giles carefully lifts the cremation urn.

Giles carefully lifts the cremation urn.

Highlight of the day though, is James (age 4) visiting the site in full home-made armour as his special treat and bringing us his finds. Archaeology doesn’t get much better than that.

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