I can describe my experience of the fieldwork in the Crossroads of Empires project as the highpoint of this year for me. As an archaeology student, I must say I really enjoyed participating in my first dig in African soil, especially since I had taken up archaeology out of interest for Africa’s past. I also had an amazing time conducting interviews with the region’s inhabitants to collect data about contemporary plant use for my MA thesis. Those human interactions were very fulfilling, as people in and around Birni Lafia astounded me by their kindness and generosity.
Julien Jourand, Université Libre de Bruxelles
The few inconveniences like car problems, little illnesses or sardines with (a lot of) palm oil in many meals can’t dampen my enthusiasm. The name, “merry village”, suits Birny Lafia. Indeed, people were very nice, like these little kids who everyday brought us onions and tomatoes literately just out of the earth. The site, with a great team, was very interesting. From the beginning, it has seemed impressive: I have never seen as many potsherds on surface and over such an extent. And the excavations didn’t fail to meet my expectations, especially the pavements of the testpit III. In brief, this first African fieldwork was successful, professionally and humanly.
Nicolas Nikis, Université Libre de Bruxelles