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Many Adventures of a Nomadic Poet A young poet with Asperger's makes travel his passion, and away he goes...

Painting with Concrete

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC | Tuesday, 26 June 2012 | Views [1443]

Last night I got a good amount of sleep yet I still felt tired. Washing up and then having a cup of coffee always feels good. Brekkie was simple, and it was the usual routine of packing lunch, going to Caraballo, and getting ready. Our half was on construction and we'd spend most of the day "painting" the inside and outside of the library with concrete. First we had to mix the concrete and then use a spade to throw it onto the cinder blocks. After splotching up the entire area we then smooth it out. The locals used a 2x4 to initially smooth it and then we had to make it finer. With each smooth area the library was slowly but surely coming to life. These guys actually stand on top of a cinder block that's only about five inches wide.

The roof was started today as well. The tin from the old structure is being used for the roof. The locals built makeshift scaffolding with cinderblocks and wood, and a makeshift ladder with two long sticks and several pieces of plywood.

What we're doing is haing a huge impact and Courtney stressed that last night. As we were playing kickball yesterday the kids were extremely difficult, but we can all tell we're having a positive influence. Eduacation is very poor in the DR; in the western hemisphere Cuba ranks near the top in nearly every educational category whereas the Dominican Republic always ranks at or near the bottom. As you drive down the dirt road on the way back, there's the inside of a refrigerator door that's now part of a fence. Very creative! Unlike the other days we didn't stop at the colmado on the way home, so I couldn't get my customary chips and chocolate milk. When we returned to the lodge, Courtney and Amy took some of us on a short hike for some impressive views of an already spectacular view.

The clouds and sky looked marvelous! Jace, Melissa, and Audrey are part of the "tie-dye crew" since they're all wearing tie-dye T-shirts. Dinner was a multi-course feast of salad, spaghetti, and garlic bread, with a dessert of raisin cornbread. Very similar to what I eat at home due to my sister's favourite food being spaghetti. It's a great comfort food and not that complicated to cook. On our agenda for tomorrow is the STD workshop. We'll be asking the two older groups what they remember and learned from the other day. Time is winding down on this project, and I wish I could be here for the entire summer! Even though I can't stand the heat I'd love to be here longer doing my part. Last week the dogs were barking a lot but they've been surprisingly calm this week. It's often windy as well, but I find it easy to slumber with the soft sound of a wind a-blowin'.

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