BAP Field School 2022 Blog
Manuel Macuja Elizalde
Thursday, June 23
Our second day here in Bicol was our first day of orientation here at the Bikol Archaeological Project (BAP)! We started our day off by getting ourselves introduced to the area, and specifically we looked at the work that has been done by the previous years of BAP investigation. First, we traveled to the Our Lady of the Holy Rosary Church in Bombon, where we met with Fr. Eric, learned about the history of the site and the archaeological investigation of the site, and observed as graduate students Robin Meyer-Lorey and Earl Hernandez engaged in LiDAR and photogrammetry mapping of the church.
After our trip to Bombon, we went to the Quipayo Church in Calabanga. Here Robin and Earl once again LiDAR & photogrammetry mapped the church, during which time us students learned the history of the site and explored the church further. During this time, the team was also informed by the parish about the unearthing of bones during a recent renovation– an analysis that the graduate students of the program entered into immediately.
This being our first day out in the field, I can’t help but realize how unique this program is, and how thankful I am for its existence. Archaeology in the Philippines is an incredibly underutilized field, and through our work, and the work of the Ifugao Archaeological Project before us, we can help rewrite the current understandings of Philippine History. Through the continued study of our people’s past through the archaeological record, we can write a history in a way that we cannot from looking at Spanish records from the time.
The day ended with a trip to the MikeLiz Integrated Farm, where the team relaxed, ate dragon fruit ice cream, drank dragon fruit juice, and decompressed. Spirits are high, and we can’t wait to get started with the project in earnest!