The process of moving the cement merits detailed exposition. The workers (and John) shoveled the cement into buckets that we had lined up (about 8 of them); these were the same buckets Ana and I had used to hurl water. I picked up a bucket, turned, handed it to Jen, who passed along to Ana, to the next and then the next, then, up the ladder, person by person (3 on the ladder), to the roof, where two caught buckets, passed back to another 2 who dumped into wheelbarrow, then another tossed the bucket down to a catcher we had on the ground who would then run the bucket over to the cement and place it down for the men. Repeat. Continue reading →
*Disclaimer: This is MUCH longer than most of my other posts. It will take a while to read through. If you were to print it out, it would be about 2 pages double-spaced. I’m going to post part two separately.
Almost three weeks after the fact, about to reconstruct the day of concrete and cement, I looked in my journal today to see what I’d noted, in the hopes that it might jog my memory of the day. What I found: nothing. That evening I was in bed by 9 p.m. and asleep by 9:03; I was that wiped. Why so tired? Let me share.
When we arrived at 7 a.m., we came upon the workers mixing dry concrete into a large pile of sand that was about 15 feet wide and 4-5 feet high. They’d place sand down, layer some concrete, then more sand. The next step of the process involved turning the two together (with shovels) and then placing the mix into cone-like piles. The 2 boys were immediately assigned this task. Several of the girls and adults went up onto the roof to prep it for the foundation; they took bands of cloth/paper and stuck them into the holes in the roof so that there wouldn’t be any leaks later. After the cone-like piles were finished, it was all mixed back together, into a large circle (about 18 feet in diameter, and 1-2 feet high), ready for the next step. Continue reading →