Monday, December 29, 2008

Mexico Trip

I cracked the code of the Easy Share camera and pulled out the Mexico trip pictures. The secret was in the sequence of events. First the camera must be connected to the computer with the camera off. Then when the camera is turned on it really doesn't turn on but accesses the computer and begins an automatic hand shake with the computer. Then low and behold a download wizard pops up and asks the question, "Where do you want to store your pictures?" How easy is that?

This is what the work sight looked like when we reached it on the first day of the project. It was nothing but a hole in the ground with a cement foundation to place the block walls on. The dirt there is quite sandy. I'm surprised the walls didn't cave in while we were working on the blocks but they seemed to stay in place pretty good.

By the end of the first day we had completed about 2/3 of the block walls. The blocks there are a little different then here in the States. As you can see they are narrower and have three holes instead of two. I think they are a little lighter than the American blocks and weigh in about 30 to 40 pounds each.

This would be the cement mixer. Yup, you just pile it on the ground, grab a shovel and start mixing. This is a teeny little batch made for laying the block. When the lid for the tank was mixed we started with 80 five-gallon buckets of sand, ten bags of cement, and numerous buckets of water. Three shovelers mixed the huge batch and two wheel rickety barrows were used to move it, move it, move it. We got to move it, move it, move it.

Sometimes the blocks had to be custom fit which required skill, strength, and a accurate eye. Right. You can see a number of broken blocks laying around the site that didn't quite line up with my accurate eye. The structure in the background is the actual community center which will have a second floor when completed to house teams like ours. I learned a lot about laying block on this trip.

Old blocker layer Dave