Report by Jon.
I attended the UBSS Centenary Symposium held at the University of Bristol. Jon supplied the following account of Saturday’s activity in Hallowe’en Rift:
“Five diggers (Jon, Jake, Tav, Paul and Nick), all of whom knew each other, assembled at the appointed place. In a week when fireworks, metaphorical or otherwise, were a regular topic of conversation, the early arrivals were a little subdued, possible as a result of the cold and wet conditions. Then Paul arrived, buoyed up by New Van Syndrome, and spirits were raised.
At the dig, Paul took the lead position, supported by Nick. Jon and Jake hauled skips. Tav again volunteered for the position in the lake. The water was somewhat higher that during previous sessions, but over the course of the session was largely removed with the spoil.
Initially, rocks that had been stacked near the dig face during a previous session were removed to the lake. In due course, spoil from the rift was bagged and hauled out. Some bags were notably heavier than others. The team, as always, were quick to blame Nick, but just as quick to forgive him. It is just in his DNA.
Come the afternoon, the hauling team moved back and removed the spoil from the lake back to the junction. Paul and Nick continued to dig for a while longer, making sure to leave the spoil well away from the step in the floor which now needs removing. As lunch time approached, the team moved to the entrance where a decision was needed on whether, or not, to haul the bags out. Paul remarked on how well the bags had been stacked; the team then departed.
In the changing hut, the conversation returned to the topic of fireworks. Some reminisced about their childhood experiences. Sparklers were a common factor in many a childhood; Paul had been forced to watch the welder.
The team retired to a local hostelry for light refreshments and proceeded to put the world to rights. Nick then went to buy a firework.”