Sunday, December 16, 2012

All I want for Christmas is -----

“Every child makes a wish for Christmas.  What are you wishing for?  Parents do everything they can to make every Christmas the best ever.  I think about Christmas every time I see a little Dominican boy flying his kite.

Every homemade kite I have seen so far is made with 3 little sticks and a plastic bag.  Just because I think I know how to make a better kite, do you think I should stop these little boys in what they are doing and show them how to make a better kite?  If you ask me for something this Christmas I might just send you in the mail a plastic bag, 20’ of twine and 3 little sticks.  Remember what Christmas is all about.”  Wallace

This sow was the epitome of relaxation!  It is also kind of how we felt after this week was over---totally exhausted.
After working on this water project for months, we successfully obtained an appointment with the head of INAPA to discuss the water situation in Azua.  Here we are receiving our T-shirts as honorary members of the water committee.  We were standing in the parking lot gathering our thoughts about the meeting before we went up to the appointment.  Wallace suggested we all pray.  He said the prayer, the meeting was miraculous and these good people who had travel a long distance to get to the meeting were very pleased and felt they had been blessed by the Lord.  We are hopeful they will get the water they need before we finish our mission.  That will take a miracle, but we do believe in miracles.  Please remember Azua people in your prayers.

Pozo Prieto is a small community of about 30 families in the mountains not far from Puerto Plata.  They have no running water in their community at all.  All water must be hauled and is usually hauled in 5 gallon buckets by the women on their heads.  When they can afford to buy potable water they can, but it is difficult to get it home following the trail over the river and up steep slopes.  They usually drink water from the river which is contaminated with parasites, amoebas, and disease.  We had to cross the river to get to the community.
The pictures below were taken during our visit.  The two women carrying buckets on their head were demonstrating their daily task, 2 to 3 times a day going up this steep hill.  We tried walking a short distance up the trail, but it was so slippery from a recent rain we didn’t make it very far.  They carry 60 lbs on their head up to 3 times a day for a distance of 1.5 kilometers! 
Pozo Prieto is truly a very needy community.  This project seems to meet perfectly the desire of all to help our fellow men.  The Peace Corps volunteer, Simona, has been living for a few months with one of the lady’s you see carrying a bucket on her head.  Simona is helping the community to organize their efforts and to design the system. 
We look forward to being part of this water project!

Which one of these guys is more stubborn--the one on the left or the one on the right?

Wallace talked over the water situation with the burro.  The burro said he was tired of hauling stuff for everyone.  He would rather be like the pig.  (Do you think the burro knows what awaits the pig?)
This is a picture of Simona, the Peace Corps  volunteer who lives in the community, is helping them organize and is designing the water system.  She is a graduate mechanical engineer.
We visited the little town of La Solapa with Peace Corps to discuss the possibility of assisting with a water project.  This is the water committee standing in front of their community center and then walking to see the “Toma”

We finally met a Dominican Horse with a name.  Meet “Segferino” the horse!
This is one of the members of the water committee.  BIG curlers is common though the women are pretty shy about it.
Edith refuses to get any closer than this to a moto.
Peace Corps volunteers:  Elena, Jim and Simona.  Elena is helping the community with the water system.  Jim is teaching the community how to get better yields on their crops.
We met with the Branch President of Nizao and 8 families to discuss the food project.  Afterwards we walked to the home of 4 members to see their projects.  This is just a sample of what we saw.

Can you see the confusion on this ladies face?  We don’t think we have figured out how to simplify things yet!
Saturday we drove to Nizao again to visit with the Branch Pres of the Don Gregorio branch and 2 families to start the food project.  Here are few pictures.

Typical house in poor sector.
We ended the week by going to the Consuelo branch and helping with their Primary Program.  During church the first youth ever to receive his Duty to God Medallion was presented.  After church we ate dinner at a member’s home.

These guys were practicing their music next door while we had dinner.  Their music was really LOUD!


  1. I feel like the burro. Good work this week. You deserve a rest (but probably won't get it until you are 'feet first, face up.'

  2. What will the "food projects" consist of mostly -- eggs?