Monday, June 16, 2008
by Christine Eyde

Today we went to Heidi and JoseĀ“s barrio. The kids were having school today so we helped to make lunch for them and serve it. A retaining wall needed to be built, but first the footings need to be done. There were large rocks that needed to be moved. Once they were moved, they were placed to form the footing for the retaining wall.

There was a football field that needed to done. (or as they call it back home, a cement soccer field.) Cement needed to be mixed, to this we needed to haul sand to the mixer in large buckets and dump them in. Once the cement was mixed, it needed to be taken to the area for the squares to form the football field. According to the people who worked on this end of the project, it was extremely labor intensive, Mark said it was the hardest work he has ever done in his life!

There was also a latrine that needed to be built in a house belonging to Flora. Flora has opened her home the last two years during our trips down here and is very well respected here, rightfully so, she is a remarkable woman that is not afraid of some work. In the morning, Robert and Steve dug a hole to start the latrine. During this time, Flora, two teen aged girls and myself moved brick from the front of her house to the back of her home and stacked them. We also moved boulders-rock to be used in the base of the latrine. Robert and Steve dug a hole that was about 8 feet deep. After lunch we returned to the site. Steve mixed mortar (seven bags of dirt, one bag of cement, about a half a bucket of water) to be used in between the rocks. Robert climbed into the hole and did not finish until it was time for us to go home. Robert would mix mortar, I would hand rocks and buckets of mortar to Steve, Steve would stack rocks and layer mortar. We finished a good six feet, and then it was time to load onto the bus. Our job was a little more difficult towards the end, we lost our wheel barrel that we were using to mix the mortar.

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