Recently I have not been able to put a worry of mine to rest. That worry is that I will not be able to get a job in archaeology because I cannot drive. I feel like I am running out of time as in less than a year and a half I graduate. I have this awful fear that in that time I am going to need to learn how to drive, past my test and get a car all before I graduate and start applying for jobs. And why? Because almost everyone I know, friends and especially archaeology student and lectures can all drive.
I have never really felt like learning how to drive was an essential part of my life as I come from a family where neither of my parents can drive and for this reason I am so used to finding other ways of getting around. I walk a lot and don’t find public transport a struggle as I am so used to it. But now that I am close to a time where I will have to be applying for jobs I have realised that perhaps driving is an essential and unfortunately, one that I don’t have!
The most obvious reasons for why being able to drive is essential in archaeology is because of tools and equipment. Even if tools and equipment are kept on site, the archaeologists themselves normally stay away from site. For example, over the summer when I took part in my three weeks of archaeological field work our campsite was a good 30-40 minutes’ drive from the West Kennet Avenue, the site in which we were excavating. Not only this but as a registered field archaeologist you can be offered jobs all over the country and despite me being used to public transport it does not always allow you to travel to out of reach places and it can be rather difficult travelling with the equipment needed.
For these reasons I am hoping to at least start taking some driving lessons over the summer holidays and perhaps into my fourth year when I return from my Erasmus year abroad. Despite this, in my head I am still questioning whether being able to drive it is an absolute essential in archaeology.