Friday, May 29, 2009

Fieldwork Friday #7

I am actually in the field for the next week and a half, but I have set this post to automatically appear, since I have been so MIA recently.

There has been some talk over at Accidental Remediation (AR) and Green Gabbro (GG) about hotel and field vehicle amenities. I thought I would add in field camp needs. I encourage all the other bloggers reading this to add thier own and expand on this psudo-meme! I would love to see what others look for.

Short Geologist of AR posted that they most like to have Internet and breakfast at their hotel. I am pretty unused to the idea of a hotel during field work to start with (although it is unclear if the Short Geologist was specifically talking about field work, or just in general or for meetings). We almost always camp when doing fieldwork. When I go to meetings I try to stay in the host hotel, so that there is easy access to a nap, a place to easily ditch your stuff, a change of shoes, and a good, localized party area. But when it comes to field work and I do have the luxury of staying in a hotel it is usually not the nicest of hotels (less that $50 a night, unless someone else is paying for it), so I shoot for a place that has:
  • a shower that is not super nasty
  • a door/window that locks/latches
  • no roaches
  • a place with clean sheets/bed (actually hard to find in some places, I have spent the night in a sleeping bag on top of a hotel bed; I always take my own pillow for obvious reasons)
  • My husband like to stay in places near food/bar and that has a fun rustic name like the "Waggon Wheel" or the "Rusty Cannon" (we have stayed at both).

If I can swing it, it is always nice to have:
  • free internet (or be near a place where I can "borrow" it from, I will not pay a hotel for internet, it is a rip off)
  • a breakfast that has the waffle bar or better and is included in the price (I hate those old red apples they always serve that taste like they have been out since last year)
  • A safe place to park my car
  • A clean pool in the summer

Maria of GG talked in her post about things she most looks for in a field vehicle, such as multiple cup holders, an emergency kit, and a aux input. I love my field vehicle, although it has not been running very well since I decided to get it "fixed" and a few thousand dollars later it is still leaking oil and I am terrified to take it to far out from civilization.

Some of the requirements I look for in a preferred field vehicle are:
  • high clearance
  • a reasonably well running engine (something I can fix if the need be)
  • spare tire that is inflated and a good jack (not a scissor jack)
  • 4 wheel drive (that works)
  • older, but not falling apart (built like a tank (but not to heavy), not the tin cans they make these days)
  • cargo space
  • enough room to sleep in the back if I (or the weather) so choose
  • not to clean (I do not want to worry about it getting mud inside it or scratches)
  • Not to big (narrow enough to go down those roads no one has driven in a few decades)

Some things I wish I had in a field vehicle:
  • a built in crane/winch
  • satellite radio
  • extra large gas tank
  • a cup holder that a Nalgene bottle would actually fit in
  • John wants a propane refrigerator

And my contribution to this ongoing discussion would be field camps. When we go on museum trips my husband has a tendency to pack everything but the kitchen sink (or so it feels) since we have the room in the van. When I am at a moderate sized field camp (2 to 5 people) I like to have:
  • a good tent that can stand up to the wind and rain (and all of the regular stuff you have in a tent)
  • a campfire is always nice
  • a chair (not a requirement, but nice)
  • walking distance to quarry
  • enough coolers and water
  • Something I am forgetting........
John just wants:
  • good weather (lol, we have had a lot of wind this spring in our camps)
  • beer & bacon
  • a shade tarp (we have already lost 2 this spring)
  • a table to cook on (I can get by with a piece of wood on a cooler)
  • a tent facing the sun first thing in the morning (I am not a fan of this)

At a swank, fancy camp it is nice to have (some of this I have actually had, some just a dream):
  • flushing toilets!
  • Running water from a sink
  • showers
  • someone to cook and/or food I do not have to cook
  • no bugs
  • cell service (this can be a good and bad thing)
  • electricity!
  • a refrigerator
  • more things I can't think of right now.....
I am happy to admit I have all but two of these things this week while in the field.

What do you look for in these items?

© ReBecca K. Hunt-Foster. Please see the "Field Work Friday Rules" about the work I do and collection practicies.

1 comment:

Tor Bertin said...

When I was in Mexico, I stayed in a several hundred year old Spanish mission converted to tourist hostel for something like $10.00 a day.

Other than the random mass beheading, Merida is great!

As for fieldwork... I think most everything you mentioned would be great, but I find myself going nuts without some source for my music.