Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Pipes, Prayers, Progress

The last two days have seen much faster progress; thank you so much for your prayers and encouragements! Please keep them coming! Each day, we have between 3 and 6 employees plus the five of us, and things are getting done at a better rate. When I say "the five of us" I am referring to four students and I. Frequent readers will already know Ryan and Elizabeth who have been here 4 and 2 weeks, respectively. But now we also have Jonathan and A.J., who arrived on Sunday to relieve Lisa and David who returned to Texas.

The power house is now fully constructed and we began "moving in" today. We built shelves for the eight, honkin', deep-cycle batteries that weigh about a zillion pounds each, even in Spanish. We bought a diesel generator as a backup to help maintain our batteries if/when the hydrogenerator is offline, and we store that in the power house too. Next we hung our plasma screen TV on the wall, and put in a hot tub and a recliner. Here is a picture of me looking overly serious with our new little power house, or casita de poder.
Down at the river, we finally finished drilling all the holes in the granite boulders. Granite, for those of you who may be unaware, is hard. Hard as a rock. It makes concrete look like a cotton ball. I think it must have taken us 10 hours to drill 12 holes. Once the holes were drilled and then we used a strong, two-part epoxy to glue rebar into the boulders. Then we formed a rebar cage and poured concrete around it. This is how we are making the concrete pillars to support our canal. We expect the water to weigh about 1000 pounds when it is full, so they need to be pretty strong.

The first picture above shows Chico (Fransico), Jesiel (who is 13), and Walter (!) as they tie the rebar for the first column. The second picture is a picture of Ryan - who I like to call Rhino now - forming more rebar for our second and third columns. Later we're going to build a full-size Stonehenge replica or maybe a runway.

This is Ryan and Jonathan bringing a piece of PVC pipe to use as a form for the columns. We won't use this tiny size pipe for moving water; for that we will use 12 inch diameter PVC which is so big it makes me happy just to gaze upon. But I'm sure you are the same way.

"Whoever gazes upon large pipes with lust in his heart has already committed civil engineering."


bluejay said...

I can hear music in the distance. It's the hushed tones of the Hallelujah Chorus, slowly building in intensity in anticipation of the grand finale.

Anonymous said...

Yay! It is so great to see pictures of what you all have been up to! The Crabtree's, my family, and I have been praying continually. We pray that God will provide everyone with strength, safety, good health, and positive attitudes. I am so proud of what you all are doing down there for those people, keep up the great work!
God speed,

Anonymous said...


We continue to pray and be excited for you and the team!! Youall have quite a building (casita) for the power house. We pray for everyones strength, safety, and special acceptance by the villagers. We also pray for continued timely progress for all remaining activities.

Always caring for you,
Jim and Loretta

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the pictures posted today! It is good to see you are all alive and well. It sounds like God is proving to be faithful once again-imagine that?! We will continue to pray for good health, encouragement, and progress. May you each be blessed as you serve our Father.
Much love.
Jenny Stewart (Katie Head's sister)