As with most school meetings when you’re a kid, there were some times when it was fun
And times when it was boring!
Another event that took place today was the official first-time production of our own blocks with the newly donated block-making-machine. Over the past month or so, there was quite a bit of gathering of soil samples and mud-cake-making in order to find just the right type of soil for making blocks. Once the right soil was found, it then had to be watered down to loosen it up so it could be dug out, hauled to the block-making site and spread out to dry out a bit (tip #1: Soil that is too moist = muddy bricks once compressed). By mid-afternoon the soil was about just right, so two guys went to work shovelling the dirt into the hopper. The machine pumps out 1 brick every 2 seconds, so there isn’t much time for standing around...just a bit! These unbaked mud bricks will be used for construction of main walls. Once up you tack chicken wire onto them then plaster, and voila! (Apparently) For foundations, we need to use these locally made baked bricks. They’re much stronger. You may notice the charred background in this picture. A few days ago we came home from town late in the afternoon to find fire scattered along the mission farm’s one boundary. It had been discovered at 1 p.m. or so and the staff and Nat and Salena had spent until 5 p.m. working to beat it out with water and green leafy branches. Although the fire came close to some of the mission’s buildings, nothing major was damaged and it was otherwise successfully diverted to a safer area to burn itself out at nightfall. It seems the fire crossed through the dry river bed (which has reeds). But now that the fire has burned there, it seems as though all our boundaries are now clear fire breaks. Even if they had to be cleared by burning themselves!