We have visitors at the moment. Alex who came to help out in December and January came back with two friends. They, along with our other family and friends helped raise funds to do a small water and sanitation project. About four thousand plus dollars was raised altogether and the guys are helping to install latrines and rainwater tanks. They put up two and a half on Thursday and Friday. If it wasn’t for the rain it would have been three.
The rain is also causing outher complications as the village is deviod of people. This year has been a really dry year. It is just the beginning of the rice growing season and people have been waiting and waiting for enough rain to plough their fields. Then they start the rice seedlings and they normally let them grow for about 20 to 30 days before transplanting. They should be finished transplanting by now but some are still ploughing and growing the seedlings.
So unfortunately we don’t have all the households who want latrines lined up ready to go. The people do want them but most are just a tad busy at the moment. Having the guys there and with the attention a bunch of foreigners usually draw, is helping to promote the things in a positive way. More updates on the latrines later. And thanks to all the family and friends who donated money to this little cause. There were about three latrines put in earlier and they look great… clean and nice with all the things you need to keep them that way. So your help is much appreciated and we could not have done anything without your help.
We went for a walk yesterday. The girls, David and I went only to the temple and back. David has bung knees so wisely didn’t choose to go on the “Ben hike” with the other guys who kept going, after the temple. We came back and on the way spotted a cute baby green viper on the trail. Further along there was a troop of languars heading down the valley. These guys have been hanging around lately. I saw them near the house site and heard them in the trees just before their bedtime. They have a distinct piglike grunt. A couple of weeks earlier we saw another troop of them and in amongst them was sitting a male gibbon. I didn’t think he was anything but a black bit of vine but zooming in could make out what he was and he was staring right at us so casually. I believe his picture is in my previous posting where i didn’t have time to write anything.
The other guys hike was just a bit longer, at 20 km through a rainstorm and over and around the mountain. Typical Ben hike and they came back sore wet and hungry! Fun!
So that is a short update from us here in the forest. We are still living out of our boxes in a mess. We still have a forest and hoe toilet but we are getting by and really looking forward to moving into our house someday… walls and floor… walls and floor to go!