Endings…and beginnings

As of July first, I am officially no longer employed to write up the ceramic site report for Hacinebi, a fourth millennium site on the Euphrates River in Turkey, on which I have been working for more than 20 years.  Although this did not come as a surprise (I have completed a first and second draft of the data portions of the book and the research money has dwindled), it still feels like something of a loss.  While I will still be doing some work helping shepherd the book through the publication process, I am for the most part done with working with material from the site. Hacinebi has been one of the long-term constants in my life and having it suddenly not taking up many of my waking hours seems odd.


I first began working at Hacinebi, as an excavator in the summer of 1995.  A few years later, I honestly don’t remember the date, but sometime in the late nineties, I began to work on compiling the data from the analysis of the Chalcolithic-era ceramics and eventually to write up the ceramics for publication.  I have also worked on the faunal material from both the Chalcolithic and the Hellenistic periods.  I took periods of time off for various reasons, including my novitiate year as I was starting my journey to become a Benedictine Sister. None of these projects were ever full time work, nor did I think of them as my own research, but Hacinebi has been part of my life for the better part of twenty years and now it will occupy at best a peripheral position.  – It is definitely a loss, but it is also opening up new doors for me.


Not having a list of tasks related to Hacinebi which need to be completed, frees up quite of a bit of time in my week.  Finishing this work has allowed me to think about how I want to shape my future.  What kinds of work do I want to undertake?  What dreams have I had that I have felt unable to pursue because of the time and energy I have spent on the Hacinebi ceramics?  I have a few ideas percolating and I’m excited (if admittedly somewhat nervous) to see what beginnings come out of this ending.