Munaychay, Peru – Got through

We nearly got through. No, not the time in the children’s village, we even extend for a week. We are talking about the rainy season. It’s nearly over. The sky presents itself more and more in deep, nearly night-dark blue, interspersed with pretty white clouds. There is rain only every few nights now. Therefore it appears that here are only two kinds of weather: grey rainy cool or unpleasant piercing hot sun, where even sunscreen doesn’t really help.

Our excavation work is also done. The garage access received a fine gravel layer; some more drainages were made to allow rainwater to run out so that the track doesn’t silt up any more, then we go on to joiner’s works. The hamlet Huilloc above Ollantaytambo is also supported by Corazones para Perú. The school receives support, a proper health centre was established, and a trout-farming built. Soon a fish restaurant shall be set up to create new jobs and to bring tourists in this remote corner. Currently a computer training room has to be furnished. 11 new PCs were bought, and today the computer tables shall be assembled, which were made in the proper carpenter’s workshop in Santa Rosa.

The cabinet maker, Joerg and I screw them together and afterwards lacquer them the Peruvian way: A kind of huge wad of cotton wool, made from cotton fibre, has to be dipped into the varnish with the hand (the surgeon’s gloves dissolve after few immersions). After a few trials we have got the hang of it how the single fibres don’t stick to the table but stay at the wad. With this technique we are so close to table and nitrocellulose varnish that I can take a proper breath of it each time. I have to seek fresh air in between times. Next day I feel like having a hangover. Sniffing doesn’t seem to be anything for me.

Next we shall take care of the children’s village fleet of vehicles. The benchmark figures are sorted out in a meeting, and then we set off: On one day we visit Cusco’s car dealerships to compare prices and performance of new pick-ups, the next day we check the second-hand car market. Like in most developing (or still nearly developing) countries with strong import restrictions used cars are sought-after and excessively expensive, and in addition run-down by mining companies. Speedo- and odometer are disconnected on time between 40,000 and 70,000 km, so that nobody can detect the exact mileage.

On Sunday eventually – we don’t have always a weekend – the driver of the children’s village receives a driving lesson. Certainly he is able to drive, but he doesn’t know what for is the gear reduction of the 4WD gearbox. But it is ideal on these steep mountain sections and in these high elevations, and downhill it goes easier on the brakes. Joerg draws up a vehicles’ maintenance plan for the driver, and that has to be discussed and explained. Another week has passed in a flash and we have to worry about how and when to leave Peru, since the Unimog’s temporary import permit for three months will expire soon.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.