Besides being great days for diving, the last 2 days of week two also proved that you should always expect the unexpected in Vietnam. With occurrences such as our boat unexpectedly picking up random people before transferring them to another boat in the middle of the ocean, this was a week full of surprises. However, while life in Vietnam remains peculiar, our project steadily continues!
Our main site for diving this week was near a stone anchor, probably Arabic of origin. This stone anchor was found during surveys last year but its location was forgotten. It was therefore important to re-find the stone anchor site and properly map it for future research. Thankfully, vague memories of its location were preserved in the memories of some of the (previous)participants, making our lives a lot easier. After knowing roughly where to go, we send a number of snorkelers into the water to locate the anchor so we could begin our research.
Locating the stone anchor happened surprisingly quick, with it being located within 20 meters of where our boat was anchored down at a depth of about 9 meters. Within minutes one of our teams was in the water to take the GPS co-ordinates. Research of the anchor itself was conducted after which a survey of the surrounding area was done to find any possible related artefacts. This research was executed through a circular swim-line search and delivered some minor results with a number of metal and ceramic artefacts found within 15-40 meters of the stone anchor.
While the divers were busy working on the stone anchor, our snorkelers managed to find a large number of ceramic artefacts near the shoreline. Due to the fact that these artefacts were washed up in more shallow areas of the water, full scuba gear was not required to investigate this site. However, to make sure we had researched the entire area, a number of swim-line searches was set up in the deeper areas near the location of the ceramics. This was followed by a thorough mapping of the visible ceramics by the snorkelers.
All in all this week was a rather successful week with a number of improvements for all of the teams. The execution of the survey techniques has drastically improved since the start of the first week, and the results are there to show for it. All in all, If the teams keep improving as they do, week 3 and 4 should be great weeks for the project!
Greetings from Hoi-An,