Panama – where the seasons are “wet” and “wetter.” 😉
My first couple weeks here have been busy, sometimes hectic, most always muddy and GREAT!
When I arrived, there was a team here at the Wood’s house from Washington State. They were having medical/dental clinics, building rain-catchment systems and drilling wells (with the same equipment I use, trained by Steve and Jen Lorch who were my trainers!). I helped out where I could in all of those areas and learned a lot from Dr. Ron (who eradicated river blindness from Ecuador) and enjoyed long talks after long days of work with the team members. Two men in particular, Dr. Ron & Phil, were long-term missionaries in Ecuador and Dominican Republic, respectively. I most enjoyed talking with them about their experiences living and working for decades with their different communities. It is also cool to note that I had read (this article) about Dr. Ron and his work 6 years ago and meeting him in person was super cool!
After the team left, I worked on drilling and focused a lot on training two indigenous men. I started with Nazario & Candido, but most of the time I have been drilling with Candido (from Isla Tigre). Nazario understands the drilling process and is excited, but he has had to work on different projects so he hasn’t trained as much with me this past week. We have drilled 4 water-producing boreholes so far! I have cased two of them, but have not installed the PVC pumps yet. The 3rd is being abandoned because the location is not easy for the homeowner to access (it is on top of a slippery slope). No worries though because we drilled a 4th and that is in a better spot for the elderly homeowner and will (hopefully) be cased and finished today.
Below are some photos of my 3 weeks here in Panama – enjoy!