Monday, May 18, 2009


29 Years Ago

---------------------------------------------------Description of Mount St. Helens' 1980 events

Friday, May 15, 2009

Project: Aqueduct

The rainy season has held off and, thank goodness!
The window of unexpected weather allowed the technician and community work teams of Quebrada Mina to construct the foundations of the new water system. We had 4 weeks of relatively rain-free weather and now there are 2 spring boxes and a beautiful 3,000 gal tank to boast about.
Mixing concrete in the shade - maybe the better task to have! The massive tarp we bought to protect our work from "aguaceros" served better as it offered the shadiest and coolest place to be during the hot afternoons. Better to mix than to pour!

Of the 23 households, workers cycled through the week to be sure that each day there were at least 4 assistants available to help the technician with construction.
Nicolas pours the marginal base of the water tank - a multi-step project that later involved much rebar and cement blocks.

And the springboxes? For our purposes, "box" is a misnomer. With water seeping out of the friable clay soil from "qualquier lado," a concrete box would do little to protect the spring quality and natural flow. Our technician has devised a way to channel and cap springs that seep and often wander - the result is a concrete-and-rock mosaic with snorkels.

The Before:
Miguel Mora looks on as I point out: "Here, here, and here are places where water is trying to flow - this is good! Our mud has a lot of water in it!"

The After:A professional springbox model: note the paucity of mud.

The next few weeks will be busy with water line connections and trenches to dig. Give us a few more weeks and we'll be "pau hana," "ya listo," "done and dusted," and "all set" to celebrate the end of the grand water system project. More photos will follow!