Projects we've been working on this week: painting the main building. Pouring a road that will eventually connect the entrance to the main building and the dorms. Also out mowing and weed-eating and putting up gutters along the main building. 80% of our team are working on road. Daniel and Randy have been the main two people getting up on the 20' high scaffolding and installing the gutters. However, when we need to move the scaffolding down it typically takes 10 of us to do that. Those people are usually me Ben, Aric, Josh, Liz, Parker, Maggie, Dana, Max, Daniel, Randy and Lucas. It's amazing to see how brave and hard working our team is!!!!
No joke. We’re all working harder than we imagined. We're also more sore than we've ever been! Alex Stone, Curtis Holleman and Donald Pierce helped weed eat the first day but since then we've needed Alex and Donald in the road crew so since then Curtis has been trimming grass single handedly. Talk about an inspirational leader for us. Since his knee surgery back home he hasn't even walked up stairs and now he's walking up and down and across this extremely hilly 7 acre lot (there's no such thing as flat land in Jamaica) all day every day. The only thing that slowed him down was when the sole if his shoe came off. But he found some duct tape and after a quick repair he kept on truckin'.
The painters, Kaitlyn (one if the three Bagnal girls who are joining us on this trip) and Kateleigh. Ruthie is the mom of Kimby and Kaitlin and their church wasn't going on a mission trip this year and found out about CCCD through missions to the world (MTW). They asked if they could join us and I said sure! They've been a cheery and hard working addition to our team. Kimby and Maggie are our only two semi-sick people. They've got some sore throats and sinus stuff that's got them quite uncomfortable but they're working through it and we've got plenty of medicine for them. Curtis, our first aid coordinator, is taking good care of them.
Okay and I have to brag on the back breaking work of the road crew now. Here's what we do: carry 94 pound bags of cement off the delivery van to the worksite, shovel rocks and sand into square containers with two handles on each side (4 total). Two people then pick up that box (with a spotter helping lift) into the cement mixer (5.5' high) these boxes probably weigh 125 pounds or more. Each load of cement takes 4 boxes of rocks, 4 boxes of sand and 1.5 bags of cement. Linda Stone and Sonia Pierce then add the correct amount of water to the mixer. Then 6 of us man wheel barrows and line up to get the concrete and then truck it to the road where others spread and level the cement out. We do that process over and over and over again just about every 30 minutes. The road is 21' wide. Day one we did 18' long, day two: 24’ and day 3, 28' long!!!! I told you we were a hard working team. Oh yeah, and we have to dig a ditch for the curbs too and that is extremely hard because the dirt is seriously solid and heavy clay. And of course there is always a need for qualified supervisors and a break for a rousing game of foursquare against the students is always refreshing.
Today is Thursday, I think, and we’re going to the infirmary from 10-11 a.m. which is a government run nursing home. We're going to visit the folks there and tell them Jesus loves them.Then we'll be back at CCCD for lunch, work from 1-5 then have a great dinner. Chef calls it "Jamaica day" because he's preparing an extra large helping of traditional Jamaican dishes.
Today is also our last day to work then Friday (our free day) we’re going to the beach and then coming back to spend time with the CCCD students. Our plane flies out from Jamaica at 3:21 p.m. on Saturday and we should get back at 10:53 to RDU as long as the flights are on time. This may be the last email journal I send. Thanks for your prayers. See you later.