I’m a history buff from way back. I’ve always loved stories of “the olden days”, whether those tales were family legends passed down over time or a lovely thick history textbook. In my last year of high school, two of my five subjects were history (Australian history and the French/Russian Revolutions), I majored in history at university and then did an honours thesis in the discipline. I adore historical fiction and period pieces at the movies, and one of my favourite aspects of travelling is soaking up historical sites and sights (ha! see what I did there??).
Last year I discovered a TV program called “Time Team”. It’s an English show presented by Tony Robinson (whom you may remember from his days playing Baldrick, Blackadder‘s long suffering sidekick) that combines two of my favourite things – history and travel. Robinson and a team of archaeologists, geophysicists, and historians travel around Britain to sites of particular importance or significance and then conduct a 3 day archaeological dig to determine the history of the place. It’s really fascinating seeing how the team reconstructs the history of a particular place through shards of pottery, the remains of building walls, discarded buttons and the like, whether the site is that of a forgotten Roman villa, an Anglo Saxon settlement, or a Tudor palace. The use of technology – such as radar to build a geophysical “map” of each site – is also very interesting.
I’ve recently been indulging in episodes of Time Team every night, as a new series is currently being shown here. However, in what may be an extremely bad development for my social life, I discovered today that there are full episodes on YouTube from many of the twenty series that have been filmed. If you don’t hear from me for a while, you’ll know that I’m off gorging on more episodes of Time Team …