First Day – The first day of construction, we didn’t do too much, but we did saw some wood for Mr. Paulo, and pounded some nails into boards. The children were fascinated with the wazungus doing work, and they made their fascination evident in the 15+ strong audience we had while we were working.
Second Day – (Saturday) When we showed up on Saturday morning, Mr. Paulo had drawn an oval in the ground, about 8 ft long by 5 ft wide (for building the stands for the tanks that will hold the water). Then, he told us that we had to dig two feet down. Within this circle, there were several ant holes with little ants buzzing all over the ground (which probably attributed to those mysterious bites that popped up on our legs during the day). The kids, like the day before, were equally as fascinated and insisted on helping us. We let them use the shovels, but one kid kept going for the pick. He does not know what the word “No” means, even when spoken in his own language. The kids were around us throughout the day. In the afternoon, a few villagers came to help us, including a woman Mr. Paulo dubbed Mama Axe for her skills with the pick axe. By around 5 p.m. We finally finished the hole and were dripping sweat. I, Monica, was so covered in dirt I joked with a few Tanzanians that I looked like them now. I quickly showered and we had dinner.
Third day – Today was a cloudy day (Thank God – Alhamdoulillah), and it started raining! On the second day, Mr. Paulo had finished the gutters on the first building, also the biggest. The little drizzle that was coming from the sky was enough to fill up the gutters to produce a tiny little trickle coming out of the pipes. We celebrated by filling up a water bottle and drinking it! Then, we showed the bottle of water to a few people in the village saying it was the “first bottle of water from the rain.” The afternoon has been pretty easy because we only filled the holes halfway with sand. The next step is to fill them the rest of the way with stone, but we don’t have the rock to put in the holes yet. Mr. Paulo is working on the gutters, and all the wood has been cut, so there really isn’t much to do.
That’s all the work we’ve done for now. A lot is getting done and we are very excited to see it happen!