In Mirebalais, about half way to Hinche, we thought we might get wet, then breathed a sigh of relief when we took a left and the clouds get going to the right. But when we popped over the ridge after Cange (Partners in Health, Paul Farmer), we were greeted by another storm hanging out waiting for us. We got pretty well wet with that one over the next half hour, then we thought we were finished with it as we made it into Hinche, where the streets were dry. As we crossed out of Hinche and started up the final piece, through Papaye and up to Bassin Zim, we got the next piece, better than the last.
Buzz didn't complain. Buzz doesn't complain much. But what a way to welcome him! There are two things that kept me from complaining much. One, when you work with farmers, you don't complain about rain, unless you are on your eighth or ninth day in a row of torrential downpours. And two, when you invite someone to come work on plumbing, it seems somehow fitting (so to speak) to start out by getting wet. Agame had two pieces of wisdom. One, he noted that it was a real baptism of Buzz, welcoming him to the country. And two, he told Buzz that when folks asked him if he got wet, to tell them, "No, just my clothes."
We didn't manage to get Agame, Fanete and their niece to their house, but we got them as close as possible to the driest place possible. It was getting dark by that time, and they ended up sleeping at the neighbors, and going home the next day.
The next two weeks went quickly. Working with Buzz was a hoot and we got good stuff done. Not exactly as much or all of what we hoped for, but we learned a lot. I learned a lot, and the local folk who worked with us learned a lot. We will need follow up and hopefully, we can get Buzz back in February to work on that.
Here are some photos. I hope to get more on later, but wanted to get these out there.
Thanks to all who prayed for us, especially the congregation at Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church, in Asheville, North Carolina. Thanks to the folks of Grace for being partners in some of the best senses of that word. God's grace be with you.
As Fedlens said during our evaluation time with Buzz, an extra large thanks to Pat, Buzz's wife, who let her crazy husband come spend quality time with us.
After trying this and that and redoing that, we finally got the water to get up to within fifteen horizontal feet of Wilner and Tesil's cistern. It was just a drip, but it was a strong steady drip. We asked Wilner and his wife, Tesil, to bury a five-gallon bucket into the ground below the delivery line and measure how long it took to fill it. The first night, about 12 hours, it filled the bucket half way.
P.S. On our way down from Hinche-Bassin Zim, we talked with Wilner on the phone. After twenty-four hours of running, apparently the system finally got rid of some air bubbles, and the drip got much stronger. I called yesterday AM and the pump was filling the 5 gallon bucket every hour. The pump works 24/7, so that means 120 gallons per day and 840 gallons a week. In terms of vegetable production, that is 60 watering cans per day, plenty for some really good vegetable production.