Posted by Chris Caravella on 24 JUL 2008 6:57:31
I have some more info about the garitta to pass on. The herders on Ustica typically
mound up rocks to build crude shelters while they spend days out in the fields.
Our challenge was to try and distinguish between what they did and the original
garitta. This is done by observing the lichens growing on the structures.
Lichens take about 100 years to cover a surface, so if there are continuous
lichens then you know the structure has been in place a long time. The other
definitive clue was a well incised doorway which unfortunately was difficult
to capture in the photo because the high perch and late afternoon sun did not
allow for the best photo op. After climbing around for an hour we were confident
that we had found the garrita. It would be great to have enough time to scour
the island and map these out just for posterity sake. This area Oliostrello
is not farmed much because the lava rock is too near the surface. We came across
several well defined fumeroles (volcanic vents which smoke or fume during the
winter months) which I had not seen before. I hope I'm not the only one who
enjoys following behind Vito on excursions. He's an incredible store of historic
and cultural information. I'll be reporting soon on recent excavations at the
pre-historic village site. Vito was very exicted about recent revelations there.