Sunday, July 15, 2012

Honduras Mission Trip: Part 2

You can read the first part of our Honduras Mission Trip at this link here.

We began Day 3 by seeing some sort of odd animal that our leaders did not know the English translation. It's a pizote. We looked it up later and discovered that meant aardvark!

Ready to work!

Back on location, we needed to pull the hydraulic baler out of the hole and move the rig away from the well since it was no longer needed. I got the job of breaking down the pipe. Fail. Jason came and assisted me and together the Stingeries dominated. :-)

After the rig was moved, I slipped away from the well and learned how to make tortillas with Erin, Shallan, and the ladies in the village. They were the tastiest corn tortillas I've ever tasted! Jason got to try one and said they were pretty good. :-)

Additionally, I got to help prepare coffee that I would bring home with me. The previous day we tried coffee the ladies prepared for us. It was some of the most different-tasting, but delicious coffee I've ever had! I asked if we would be able to buy some from her and she offered to purchase more unroasted corn and roast it for us the following day to take home. She roasted the coffee with sugar and corn and ground it with black peppercorns. I swear it's amazing!

Meanwhile back by the well, the boys ran an air hose to the bottom of the well and hooked it to a compressor to apply pressure to the bottom of the well and flush out any more sand that might be remaining. Kevin operated the compressor and Jason got the unlucky job of holding the PVC pipe together at the wellhead. It was a dirty and wet job! 

Throughout the week lots of the villagers helped us prepare the well - they sieved sand to make our gravel pack, helped clean the mud pits, collected water to mix the mud, etc. It's wonderful that they can take a sense of ownership in the well by helping us build it!

They installed an ESP (electric submersible pump) and let it run the rest of the afternoon and evening to clean out the well even more since we would be testing the quality the following day. We had terrific flowrate of 50 gal/min coming from our well!

 Mike and his entourage of ladies. :-)

One of the village girls gave Lynette and I manzanitas to try. The translation is literally "little apple" and we are not sure what the fruit was! It was a tart apple with a more spongy texture. I wasn't a big fan, but it was fun to try!

The hygiene team leading the village children in a song -

 We were getting pretty clean water by the end of the day!

The village is responsible for purchasing and pouring the cement for the slab that would hold the well pump and drain excess water. They spent the afternoon preparing the slab while we got to take the afternoon off and headed back to the hotel early.

We arrived at the village on Day 4 to see a beautiful cement slab that the villagers had created the night before. They ran a PVC pipe drainage line from the slab and mounted a plaque from the sponsor (CEPC on this trip). We needed to finish cleaning everything up around the well along with any other equipment that we had onsite.

We (And by "we" I really mean the boys and Erin; Shallon, Lynette, and I supervised :-) ) cleaned the galvanized production tubing with chlorine before running it in the well and attaching the hand pump.

We all got to sign underneath the handle of the pump before it was mounted on the well. Abraham tested the water in the well and then it was PUMPING TIME!!! We all got to take a stab at pumping fresh water before the dedication.

The dedication of the well was so moving. We all gathered around and listened to Abraham give instructions to the village on how to use the well. He told them that he tested the water and that it's considered drinkable under 500 ppm salinity. Our well had tested at one of the lowest ever with only 0.56 ppm!! He also told the village that we had a 70' water column in our well that will provide for generations to come in their village. Living Waters also sends someone out every two months to do maintenance on the well and their contact information is listed on the plaque so that the village can call them anytime there's an issue with the well. Richard gave a great sermon to the village on Jesus and being saved and both Mike and Erin shared some thoughts and experiences from the group. I stood there with precious little girls holding my hands and hugging me. It was wonderful to see so many youth so excited about the well!

We had lunch with the villagers one last time before departing for the day. The highlight was when the villagers started coming to pump water, including groups of the children! The looks of excitement and joy in the adults, but especially the kids' faces was inspiring. We take for granted the fact that we can turn on a faucet every day and know water will come out for us. This village would have to go days at a time without clean water when their previous hand-drilled well failed. It brings tears to my eyes to think how what a difference we made in the lives of these villagers. Jason and I feel so blessed that we could participate in this trip and look forward to taking another one sometime in the future!!

 Our amazing drilling team!

We departed from Saba that day and drove back to the resort-like hotel for the night. Since we had been able to get the well drilled and completed in four days, we had Friday off to either relax at the hotel or go zip lining as a group. We choose to go zip lining since the place also included hot springs and massages!

The zip lining experience was completely different than Peru! (You can read about zip lining in Peru here.) We had 18 short and fast lines through the jungle rather than across a huge valley. We didn't have helmets and fortunately I had brought the head strap so Jason, Kevin, and I took turns wearing the GoPro. Jason did another amazing job editing the video!!

After zip lining we spent some time in the hot springs and got massages before heading back to the hotel and starting our long drive back to San Pedro Sula. We stayed at a hotel outside the city and just a short drive from the airport since we had an early flight the following day.

We arrived at the airport at 5:30 am for our 8:00 am flight and got the unfortunate news that we were not departing until 2:00 pm due to mechanical issues with the plane. We ended up spending the entire day in the airport and did not leave San Pedro Sula until 5:30 pm! 12 hours in an airport with seven gates and only one duty free and one small shop was not a good way to end the trip. United fail. We were VERY thankful to get home that night though and see our CeCe kitten after three long weeks of traveling!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...