The shovel is a tool. A Man's tool. A tool of power.

Most Apprentices hate this tool. (especially apprentice plumbers) as they are often handed it and set to digging for hours.

The shovel comes in many shapes and sizes. The head is (usually) a flatish metal plate, about a foot across (just right for a trench) which is attached to a handle. The handle can be of varying lengths, with tradesmen prefering longer handles (5-6 feet long) made from wood. Image a giant flat spoon, with a wooden handle.

shovels are incredibly robust, and although used primarly for digging, make excellent 'other' tools. These can include (but are in now way limited to) axes, hammers, & hoes.

Shoveling can by done alone, but is often done in pairs or groups (misery loves company). With other members of a 'shoveling party' carrying other tools like picks, and crowbars.

If you find yourself shoveling get a sturdy pair of gloves, a good radio, and keep out of the sun. It is hard (and yet rewarding) work.