So as many of you are sitting at home in the US wondering how I am doing (and wondering why I have taken so long to update my blog), I want to set your minds at ease. I am doing fine. In fact, I'm doing very well. The past few weeks we have been gearing up for a really big project that's called the Ngite-Butogo/Busolu GFS water line. However, it's kind of funny, because every week for the past few weeks we have begun the week saying, this is the week that we will actually begin work on the line. And then we find out that there is some other government stamp that we need or letter that needs to be written that someone forgot to mention to us at the beginning of the process. Today we sat in a 2-3 hour meeting discussing community sensitization about the project and how we were going to get the community to maintain the line long term, which is by far the most difficult task in any project. The local government does not provide funds for long term maintanance (it actually doesn't even provide funds for the project, a major donor does). So the communities are left to maintain it themselves. This translates into about 40 cents per family that uses a tap for minimum maintanence (i.e. a water tech and some spare parts.). However, even that money is incredibly difficult to collect. There is rarely much thought around here to the maintenance of anything...pretty much a run it into the ground mentalitly.
I don't want to sound all dull and dreary about the government meetings. Below are pictures of my working at my other office this week. In planning for the line there are some preliminary things that we have been able to do. Some of this work is at the intake which is the most exciting. Here you see michael and I running a string next to the current pipline where we need to add a second pipe to expand the flow to the sedimentation basin. It was a great afternoon! So when you are in your office and wondering what I am up to...just think, I'm at my office too