We have more news from our teams! Here’s some news from Romeo 5 all the way from Yaluca, Nicaragua! Abi reports back…
On Friday we woke up at 5.30 am to another absolute scorcher of a day. And someone told me that Miraflor would be cold. It was a lot of fun to see the fieldbase road trip at work and they didn’t waste any time in grabbing pickaxes and helping us to dig yet a more trenches… and holes… and trenches. After leaving work with deep fatigue (a genuine illness that I may have invented) we got ready for a fiesta being held in our honour by the community at a local house. After several rounds of the limbo, the girls showed us a traditional Nicaraguan dance which we obviously tounted with the hokey kokey which left them a little confused. It was a lovely evening, topped off with good food as well.
Saturday morning rolled around all too soon for our liking and it was back to digging trenches - our spirits raised as we saw the rapid progress we were making. We did a sad farewell to the road trip wishing they could stay for longer, but safe in the knowledge that we were their favorite group.
Sunday was a free day which we spent with a morning visit to Yale, the local town, and an afternoon ‘stroll’ to a lake, past incredible views and culminating a pretty successful fishing trip. We were invited for coffee and cake to the lake owner’s house and once again we were reminded of the ridiculous hospitality offered to us in Yaluca.
The next few days flew by as we worked away in the blazing sun. After finally finishing the foundations, being able to make a start on the brick work was really satisfying. After work on Wednesday, we held a patelote (kite) making session in preparation for Friday’s sports day, and competitiveness was definitely brewing in the air. On Wednesday we also enjoyed learning how to make Atol, one of the many many dishes here that maize manages to find its way in to. I’m pretty sure I speak for everyone when I say that Thursday was the best day here; a combination of Darren’s birthday, a church opening (not two events I’d normally put together but it works), cake, fruit and a drink only referred to as ‘diabetes juice’ meant that we were all sufficiently full of E-numbers, and happy. The effort the local people put into the birthday was very touching and we will be sad to leave such a genuine and kind community.
The Romeo 6 team also has some news for us - Catherine reports...
Today Saturday 13th august will be the opening ceremony of the Los Apantes community centre! Romeo 6 has worked long and hard, digging, cementing, plastering, painting and more digging! The result has been a success though – a bright turquoise community centre complete with a roof, although at one point we wondered if we’d ever finish! It hasn’t all been hard work though. Romeo 6 has had a visit to a baseball game, a waterfall (where those of us with no shower took the opportunity to wash our hair!) and to a cigar factory in Esteli. We’ve also had visits to other Raleigh community projects to see how they have benefitted those communities’ lives and had family days where we had the opportunity to see the daily lives of our host families; to get to know their customs and values, and learn valuable skills like making tortillas, hand washing clothes and clearing fields for planting crops. The highlight of the phase has probably been the Raleigh races sports day which Romeo 6 organized for some numerous, very energetic children of the community. With races like the three-legged race, the dizzy spade race, a parent’s balloon race and the obstacle race which included Romeo members as obstacles at great personal risk. The day finished with the Romeo team breaking the rope in a tug of war and a presentation ceremony with certificates made by Romeo 6. A nine hour party is planned for after the opening ceremony tonight, and then Romeo 6 will be back on the road for the two day coach journey back to Costa Rica.
Mini updates from our other groups are as follows…
Romeo 1's mammoth Turrimacho trek finally came to an end yesterday as they reached their goal and arrived at the beautiful sands of Palo Seco on the Pacific coast. The group are now spending the next couple of days relaxing, recuperating and enjoying some well deserved down time on the beach before they head back to fieldbase. Well done trekkers!
Romeo 2 have got their stomp on this morning as they storm ahead to the finish line at the truly beautiful Junquillal beach. This morning they had already trekked 12km by 6.30am… they certainly have their minds set on the prize. You can do it Romeo 2 – trek… trek!
Romeo 3 have finished filling in holes along the path that were proving a risk to tourists, and continue to work on other ad hoc jobs with the ranger. All are well, happy, healthy and by the sounds of it working hard on those guns ‘n’ buns.
Romeo 4 were left to fend for themselves yesterday as PM’s Tom and Helena left the group for a ‘Dear John’ day (where the Project Managers leave the group for the day without warning and the team has to organize and direct themselves without any instructions from the PM’s). The day was a huge success and the group spent the day clearing the beach of debris, and continued work on the wall they have been building for the last week. The team experienced another very special turtle patrol last night as they came across thirteen different turtle nests where they were able to collect the eggs and take them back to the safety of the hatchery. Something to do with the full moon we think!
Romeo 7 are at the music festival! They have been practicing their big performance and are all ready and raring to take on the Nicaraguan music charts by storm.
Blog written by Dawn Tennant unless otherwise stated.