Monday, January 18, 2010

Day Twelve: Monday, January 18 – Big Progress on the Storefront!

News from the Illness and Injury List: Still Empty!

We are preparing for our boat trip up the Amazon, so we had lots of housekeeping to do today.  We sent some folks into town with Jesse and our boat captain Rionaldo to purchase the food for our trip.  The numbers are staggering.  In terms of specifics, we’ll just mention 120 coconuts and leave it at that.  Lots of fish, lots of chicken, lots of rice, lots of fruit.  One team (A Roda) plus one member of another team (Schuyler from Os Pedreiros) went along to document the market, which is usually teeming with goods.  Today, however, it was not quite as abundant as usual, though there was still plenty for us to choose from to keep us from starving while on our trip.  Of course, we hope to catch plenty of piranhas to eat as well!

Today we did a big push on the storefront and made a huge amount of progress.  We knocked out the entire front wall so that we could begin the process of making the opening that will eventually be the access point into the area.  We got to go wild with mini-sledgehammers and flat bars to knock away the plaster.  We really made pretty quick work of it and cleaned up the mess that we made.

We also agreed to move the huge pile of sand from the front of the house at Georgete’s request.  We’re not quite sure of the amount of sand that we moved, but we know that it would register in the thousands of pounds.  Georgete wanted it away from the front of the house so we were happy to oblige.  It took us most of the day to complete this job and we got entirely filthy as we did it.  Somehow, we loved the deep red film that covered all of us when the job was done.

We also scraped the aging paint in the whole courtyard area of the house and we hope to repaint the entire inside and outside of the completed storefront area before we leave.  Because we only have five work days left once we return, we realize that this goal is very ambitious.

Jaime and Seu João have already begun to brick in the opening where the big metal doors used to be, so it will be interesting to see how far they get before we see them again on Friday.  If they can enclose that space and build the doorframe, we think it is feasible that the place could be operational right after we head home.  We hope so.

Tonight we ate an early dinner and agreed to head to bed much earlier than usual so that we could get up at 4:45 a.m. and head for the boat.  As we packed everything we needed for the trip and got more and more excited, we changed our minds and decided to leave tonight instead.  Thus, we are hopping on the boat at 11:00 p.m. Santarém time, motoring into the night, then awakening on a beautiful undeveloped beach for breakfast in the morning.

While out on the boat, we will visit many communities that are much less developed than our current Amazon home.  We will still get photos and video while we are out there, but we won’t be able to post again until Friday afternoon (here) at the earliest.  The loading of several days’ worth of material will be slow so it might take us a few days to catch up.  We have lots of sunscreen and bug repellant with us, along with the hammocks in which we will sleep for the next several nights.

We look forward to telling you all about our adventures when we return.


It"s like shooting fish in a fish market!

One page of the lengthy food inventory needed for the boat trip.

expanding our Portugese vocab with some local fruits.

Jesse and Dani haggling with Rionaldo.

Bright colors abound in the open air market.

Gianna watching over Neil as he shovels sand into buckets.


Noelle carrying a load of sand to the backyard.

The progress that was made in construction by the early afternoon. A wall knocked out, a pile of sand moved, and a few bricks laid out.


8 people…6 buckets…one giant pile of sand.


Seu João laying down bricks.


Bryan shares a serious moment in the market with Brie.


Eating fresh Pitombas and mango at the outdoor market.


This is one of the fish that were taking on our boat trip.


We tried fresh Acai…and decided we like the Americanized version better.


Sweeping up our sand piles outside Jaime and Georgete’s.





1 comment:

  1. The Turtles Rule!

    Aloha Q, You are getting your tan back. Great video guys--loved watching the demo to "beat it".

    There have been several big storms with heavy rain this week and more to come, hopefully you will bring the sunshine with you when you return.