May 23, 2013

April 19

Almonte HANDS Team:

We are back in Managua for the weekend, and so once again have access to some internet. We have been working hard and sweating like crazy, but tonight is a beautiful night.  We are sitting out in an open patio area, covered by a thatched roof.  We are enjoying a cool breeze and journaling and blogging and playing dice.  

Where to start….we have been up in Leon working on a school.  Leon is about 80 km away from Managua and a little hotter.  The guys have been working like dogs.  They are digging  5" 2" deep holes for piers.  Samuel has named them the "pits of despair" :).  They are now digging trenches for grade beams.  As it is 37-40 degrees, they are sweating and drinking mega-litres.  The "women" are the "rodbusters".  We are working on  the rebar.  We get a little shade, so its actually quite nice work.  We visited some of the classrooms today.  Its unbelievable the number of kids in the classrooms. 54 grade students in a 15'x20' classroom. They are packed like sardines right to the chalkboard. The need for an addition is certainly real.

We have some lovely team hosts, Trudy and Pete .  They are a retired couple from Alberta who are spending part of the year in Nicaragua working with the mission teams.   They are a great asset as they are working with us and are very involved with the construction. They are quite inspiring, really.  Our translator, Lester, is a joker and loves to tease.  Because we have been away, both have stayed with us in Leon so we have gotten to know them all more.  Today was great, as I saw the guys starting to develop relationships with our Nicaragua co-workers.  Sam was doing chin-ups with one of them and Joe was practicing his martial arts on Roberto.

The team is doing well.  I'm proud of them all.  Working hard and cheerful.  We are working our way through Phillipians in the evenings and everyone gives their "Highs and Lows" for the day, which is usually a "high" for me. We are eating lots of rice and beans and large chunks of meat, and drinking lots of "fanta".   At the place we were staying in Leon, there were mango , lime and coconut trees.  Today at breakfast there were 10 coconuts waiting for us with holes for straws.  Pretty awesome.  Driving home there were fellows selling live iguanas and armadillos along the side of the road.  Chris says he would eat them, but I'm not sure how the rest of us would do.

Babs

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