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Peru Day Four

January 31, 2010

January 13, 2010

The village is made-up of mostly raised houses with roof’s made of palm leaves. In the center of the village is a soccer field. The grass is cut using machetes.

DSCN0334-1.jpg picture by ktmtrailrider      DSCN0333.jpg image by ktmtrailrider

We are staying in a school house built some years ago. It is the only block building in the village. There are power lines and a generator but they have no fuel to run it. The school building has no windows but have blocks with holes for ventilation (So plenty of bugs and bats). Didn’t get much sleep. The weather is hot. I don’t think it got under 80 Deg. F. all night and the humidity is high. Sleeping under a mosquito net with no electricity for a fan or light. There is a restroom but no running water. There is a large container of water collected from the rainfall on the roof of the building. To flush or wash you take a bucket of water out of the container using an old one gallon paint can.

DSCN0337-1-1-1.jpg picture by ktmtrailrider     DSCN0348-1.jpg picture by ktmtrailrider

So we get up and start to work. We work for a couple of hours and then breakfast. One egg, some chicken and wild pig for breakfast.  The group break up in tasks. I am assigned as a cutter. The only power tool we have is a circular saw with a small generator to power it. Some of the people work on building Trusses, some on putting down the bottom plate on the foundation. Others work on marking boards to be cut for the siding. All of the lumber is mahogany with almost no knots. the Structure is made of full size 2″ x 4″ boards the side walls are made of 1″ x 10″ boards.

DSCN0345-1.jpg picture by ktmtrailrider      DSCN0349-1.jpg picture by ktmtrailrider

By lunch the building starts to take shape with a frame in place and the trusses built. Lunch is rice, chicken, wild pig, beans, fried bananas and lemon aid. I am tired all ready. It feels like 100 deg. and 90 % humidity, but it’s back to work. By evening it looks like a building with the trusses up and most of the metal roof in place. The screen is in for the ventilation and some boards are on for the siding.

DSCN0357-2.jpg picture by ktmtrailrider     DSCN0365-1.jpg picture by ktmtrailrider

By late afternoon I am bushed. I stop and take a swim in the Tigre River with some of the others and some of the village children. After we are cooled off a little I take a walk in the jungle behind the village. There are several walking paths where the villagers go to find things like bananas, fruit, wild pigs, etc. As I get deeper into the jungle the paths are like tunnels in the forest. The jungle is so thick you cannot walk anywhere but the path without a machete. There are beautiful flowers and many strange plants. Some of the plants are like the ones we buy to decorate our homes back in the US. I start to get a little nervous after a while and decide I should head back to the village.

DSCN0378-1.jpg picture by ktmtrailrider     DSCN0382-1.jpg picture by ktmtrailrider

Another team of americans arrive in Pecky-Pecky boats. They are from “Youth with a Mission” in Minnesota. They are college students and tell us they are required to spend two month in the mission field as part of their education. Their project is to go from village to village drilling wells for fresh water. It is all done by hand. They have an auger drill with four handles so four people can run the drill. They tell us they find water from forty to seventy feet deep and it takes up to four weeks for the water to be drinkable after the well is in. After the well is drilled they install a 4″ PVC pipe with a 1″ center pipe hooked to a hand pump. The well will be in the center of the village for everyone to use.

 DSCN0353-1.jpg picture by ktmtrailrider

Supper is Yuca root, a piece of cheese and one half peanut butter sandwich. It’s off to bed and a good night’s sleep in spite of the heat and humidity.

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