Friday, August 31, 2007

Bush Tech, not High Tech

Somehow, when you live in the bush like we do, it tends to feel like you got stuck in a time warp (at times I figure we must be somewhere near the ‘Iron Age’). At least as far as technology goes. During our whole rock-breaking adventure, I’m sure I read somewhere about use of pulsed lasers to break rock. Now THAT would be easier!

Take THAT you tough old rock! Actually, we’re just about finished rock smashing. One more fire ought to do it. I believe that will bring the total of fires required up to 5 or 6. All that banging takes a toll on the tools though.

Before we can start pouring concrete for the house foundation, all the iron rods for the pillars have to be prepared. The iron rods are sort of like one’s skeletal system. They make sure things that get raised…stay standing! The first step is to find the right size iron rods in Chimoio (45 minute drive) and purchase them. Then the truck goes to town to pick them up. Next, the bricklayers measure and cut them into the prescribed sizes (just like our engineer-friend told us to). Then, find a comfy spot ‘cause all that bending…

And tying the pieces together is going to take a LONG time!

Below, a widow with her orphaned grandchild stands by mud bricks she has had to make herself. She carries the water 20 litres at a time from a well that is far away (besides the water she needs for cooking/washing each day). She has dug a hole in her yard and this is where she mixes the water with the soil to make mud bricks. Then she pats the mud into a mould, two bricks at a time! That’s quite the assembly line. And with 2 small kids to care for, she certainly doesn’t have the luxury of ‘sick days’. Her old home made out of sticks burned down in a recent brush fire. The mission is pitching in to help her rebuild her home and raise her 2 grandkids.

Here’s another widow who cares for her orphaned grandkids and who has been helped by the mission for about 4 years now. Recently she requested to have a latrine built. We hired a young man from another needy family, and Voila! She’s very happy with the end result. She even got busy and found an old cement latrine cover which we purchased for her. We had to pay a local guy to haul it to her home by ox cart. It was too heavy and it was too far for even several men to try to carry. I’m sure she is now the envy of the neighbourhood!

Is it any wonder why, when we come back home, we walk around building supply stores with eyes wide with wonder and mouths agape? After much drooling and dreaming of just how much we could get done with such wonderful tools though, comes the thought, “How could we get this to fit inside a suitcase? Maybe we could dismantle it…, or not.” Or, “God, how about a very long bridge that spans the gap (ie half the world)? Then we could send our truck!” *Sigh* I guess we’ll just have to stick with Bush Technology!

Our life-saving truck...can you see the mission name above the windshield? Mushu always chases it and but when it’s standing still he’s not sure WHAT to do with it! He looks like he expects it to jump out and bite him here.

Oh yes, and these kids. They come by the house everyday while their mom is at work, to ask for cookies. They call me “grandma”. It’s rather cute.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Lynn, thanks for the updates on progress - you will be living in the mansion before you know it, won't you? So happy for you both.
Love, Eb & DB

ruth said...

Uh...feeling more than spoiled. We had a great time with your girlie...wish we were closer to her. Love the pics.

Luke said...

When I read your blog...
... get tears on my eyes. Every single time!
And I am in love with your work...

Anonymous said...

Lynn- we wish so much we could be out there already helping. Im glad you finally seem to have triumphed over the rock! By the time you guys get this one done, rick and i will be there hoping to build our own...lol... hopefully no massive rocks !

Anonymous said...

Lynn- we wish so much we could be out there already helping. Im glad you finally seem to have triumphed over the rock! By the time you guys get this one done, rick and i will be there hoping to build our own...lol... hopefully no massive rocks !

Anonymous said...

Lynn you're starting to accumulate grandchildren before I am. Not fair!!

Luv
Your older sis

Russell said...

That dumb dumb dog...