Howdy compadres, this is Mika reporting in! I hope y’all are pumped to hear the exciting events of our day. As usual, it was a jam-packed day of hardwork, tasty snackies and creative problem solving. After our half workday yesterday, we were excited to get an early start today. Throughout the day we worked on trenching, piping connections, pouring the second sink, figuring out brick placement for the walls of the station, making supply packages and more trenching.
Surviving in The Outback
Out behind the church, in what seems like the wilderness, you will find a few of engineering students (and if you’re lucky, a social work student) toiling away in the desolate “Outback”. Although it is only day three and a half of working we have managed to collectively break 6 of our limited tools. So today would be a challenge. However, a few of our team members managed to use a pump to get a lot of the water out of the existing trenching. The constant rain has made The Outback extremely muddy and the soil difficult to move. The Outback team still made a lot of progress throughout the day and by the afternoon we were able to connect the piping to the well (the water source of our project).
If You Build a Sink, They Will Come
Another major event of the day was the second sink pour. For those of you interested in concrete, we lowered the water to cement ratio because our materials retain a lot of moisture from the constant rain and humidity. As a result, our first sink was a little too workable or watery than we wanted. The adjustment we made seemed to work and to give us the mix we were looking for. We poured another sink with just a drain because we are still working out the details of casting the hole for the bubbler piece (for the sinks that will have water fountains).
The Great Flood
The last tale of the day brings us back to The Outback. Closer to the proposed distribution station, a lot of the trenching had been filled with water from a downpour yesterday. This area was too shallow to pump out the water because of the mud. Luckily, we had dammed off sections and some side trenches to help with draining. This allowed us to continue digging in some parts. Enter the culprit, I will not name names (but let’s just say he’s a graduated chemE who totes around a GoPro). Upstream of the trench crew was a dam holding back a healthy amount of murky rainwater. Eager to jump in and help, this individual wanted to drain the existing trench to make it easier to dig. However, he was focused on the trench upstream of the The Outback crew. You see where this story is going. A dam was broken, a great flood occurred downstream and that was the end of trenching for the day.
Despite the trials of the day, our spirits our high and we are still psyched to get up early tomorrow to get things done. Thanks for tuning in and be sure to check back again for more updates!