So I’ve finally dug a hole deeper than I am tall. This hole can now completely contain me. It is appropriate then that I should at last publish the long promised interior shots, since this is what I will be seeing so much of over the next few days. I’m beginning to wonder if I will need to get light in here pretty soon.
I also started to hit rock. Nothing heavy yet, a friable red and a yellow stone that I think is just compressed clay, and a bit of quartz. Finding the quartz is exciting and has given my endeavour a new energy, having broken the monotony of digging layer after layer of clay. Each clink of the crow bar means that there is something beautiful to dig up. I am also able to flatter myself that I am looking at this quartz in the same way that the original gold miners would have. Pulling it from the earth and cleaning off the dirt, it promises me the unknown and the possible. It has made my work far easier, investing it with desire. I even worked late this afternoon, trying to clear a big bit of quartz. A painter friend of mine once told me that what he sought most was the moment he looked up from the canvas and his cigarette was out and his coffee was cold and it four hours had disappeared. This is beginning to feel like making art.
Now that the hole is as deep as it is, I will have to consider a better method for getting in and out. I have tied foot loops into a rope and can slowly climb in and out, but soon I will not be able to throw the dirt out of the hole with a shovel. I will need to use a bucket system soon. It which will mean a lot of climbing up and down. I will need to look into either buying or making a rope ladder. It is raining as I write this. I hope it clears up by the time I need to start work.