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Fired from Archaeology Job

Fired from Archaeology Job

I just got fired from my archaeology job in Nicaragua. I suspect that the grad student who I was to be working really does not have anything going on. This is my suspicion. Oh well. Mira received this email letting us know that our “help is appreciated but not needed.”
The email:

Hey Mira and Wade,

It sounds like things are really working out for you, I’m glad to
hear it. Unfortunately right now
the time frame I am working in is giving me a crunch. I appreciate
that both of you want to help
me, but at this point our different time frames don’t seem to be
matching up. Things are going
well for me now and I have all the help that I need. So good luck
with your travels, interviews
and schooling. If you find yourselves in a situation where you need
something feel free to call on
me–even though your help is appreciated, your help isn’t needed.
Take care.

It seemed a little rudely written, as it was sent to two people who traveled across the world to help her. But I really do not think that much research is going on anyway. We were invited to work on this job six months ago, maybe it is a little sorry that we were dismissed only after we arrived in Central America, and the day before we were about to leave for Nicaragua.

But again, we were notified that she just arrange for a site to work on a few days ago, and that she was not going to get the permit applications into Managua for another two weeks. I think she is correct in assuming that she would not need our help, as it does not seem as if there is anything to help out with. Mira and I came to Central America to work. We do not want to go on a vacation to Nicaragua. We also do not really want to be sitting around a Nicaraguan farm with our nuts in our hands as we sit idle for weeks as the permits are processed.

I just laughed, as this is the great joke of archaeological fieldwork: you never know what is going to happen. Mira took this news a little hard. She was excited about the possibility of getting some archaeology experience in Nicaragua and helping the grad student with her dissertation research. We know the grad student personally, and I think Mira was a little hurt by the tone of the email. I suppose I have grown to be a little more callous about disappointment. After eight seasons of field work, I am a cynical old archaeologist, as I know that absolutely nothing in archaeology is a given. People travel all over the world to work on archaeology sites just to find that there are no sites to be worked on. This is normal.

One wilted possibility just leads to one that is in full bloom

We are still confirmed to begin working at Copan in Honduras at the beginning of March.
Now we have three weeks before going to Honduras that are open for travel. Maybe we will go to Panama, maybe Guatemala. I want to get out of Costa Rica.

Oh well.

Thanks for getting me to Latin America.

Wade from Vagabond Journey.com
Heredia, Costa Rica
February 12, 2008

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Filed under: Archaeology, Central America, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Travel Problems

About the Author:

Wade Shepard is the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. He has been traveling the world since 1999, through 80 countries. He is the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China, and contributes to Forbes, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. has written 3167 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.

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