Chain Race 7 de Mayo

Just as recently as the beginning of our journey, someone on our team said, “lighting never strikes twice in the same place.” I would like to refute that statement 100%. I will explain my stance on the subject when it comes time to cross that bridge, and being the elected blog master for this journey, I am the master in command of the keyboard, therefore I shall state my opinion openly, as I often do. Call it Karma, Murphy’s Law or just plain bad luck, to which I believe in neither of the abysses of that mythology. I will offer this statement: things happen for a purpose, both good and bad. It is how we as people react or reject the law of nature that defines who we are as people.

The morning began with a quick breakfast and a trip to the hardware store to gather a few items needed for today’s work on the community center. We knew ahead of time that a Mooking Fiesta was going to happen, but there was welding on the trusses for the roof, cutting out new larger windows, busting out the weak and cracked floor and some sketchy wiring preformed by one Pablo Francisco Valle Valle, our local Honduran electrician. We retain the electrical services of Senor Mater for most if not all of our projects. He bowed out on the opportunity to connect 220 volts to a 110 receptible while it was hot…

Our journey seems shorter today, quite possibly when we travel a distance multiple times, the sense of time will lessen and we will feel as though we have arrived quicker, but in actuality, we have spend the same amount of time in the process of the trip. Dividing up into several teams we did what we needed to do to move forward on the project. B-Rad, Jefe, Hondo mixed and packed the mook like the pros that they have become. Mater and I worked on sucking in the concrete dust while cutting out the new windows. Spanish Juan and Wilmer work in perfect unison as a Two Working As a Team, fondling the stinger electrode in joining the metal components together in the truss making process.

The local ladies once again prepared a feast to feed all of those working on the community center, spaghetti and all of the trimmings to fill our bellies. During the work stoppage, a brief 18 second monsoon drenched the barren ground, only to have been soaked up like a sponge. Once again returning to work until the mook was completely packed in every crevice. We gathered our tools and prepared for our journey to the Federation Villa…

It was at that point the normality of the day ended… There is truly two parts to our journey, the first is when we leave the community. It is very steep grades, both up and down. The trucks that we are being ferried in are older model mid-2000s Nissan Frontiers equipped with 4-wheel drive. Wilmer and Pablo are our hired guns from the Federation to Uber us from one stop to the next. Today, just as we ended the first phase of our journey, Wilmer pulled off the road and said that the truck’s engine was overheating. He popped the hood and as several sets of knowledgeable eyes glared at the hot mess, it appeared that one of the engine belt’s adjuster pulleys had fallen off at some point. Insert AM of the day here! We sat there for a few minutes while the locals put together a plan to deliver us to the compound. Break out a logging chain, tie two Nissan trucks together, frame to rear bumper, and there you have it folks… a Honduran chain race.

Pablo drug our stricken truck the remainder of the way down the mountain, beating and banging all the way to Wilmer’s shop for some late night repair work in his garage. Prior to leaving, we asked to stop by the Super Wal-mart for some restocking in snack supplies. Most were fearful that due to the delays and the tow job we had to endure, the trip would not happen. Pablo obliged us by dropping the team off to do our shopping. Candy, Chips, Hot Sause and strawberry milk (AKA one full quart of thick yogurt ex-lax) was stuffed into out little sacks and we reloaded into Pablo’s truck of salvation… Remember my opening statement: lighting never strikes twice? Low and behold his truck would not start… in the middle of main street. Insert the second AM of the day! That brought back a vivid memory of the time I was on a sighting trip with the Federation’s high priest… in a monsoon… in the middle of main street Quimistan…. the Auotbusdied and would not restart.

They gathered under the hood of the battered truck. Spanish Juan had some pliers, tapping and twisting wires together until a roar from the belly of the beast growled out the exhaust pipe, nearly killing every bug within a hundred meter radius, the passengers included. Once we arrived back at the Compound, Mater threw down a challenge, that the blog should be over the top… like it never is? I collected my thoughts and was drawn back to the days when the Europeans were first setting up camp in the new world. They had to literally bring all their supplies, even manure to fertilize their crops. Of course manure gives off an explosive byproduct, Methane gas. Many a ship blew up due the gas release. Once they had determined the cause of the the explosions, all manure was labeled Store High In Transit… There you have it, our afternoon in a nutshell. Until the next exciting adventure… Buenas Noches.

Marco Francisco Valle Valle


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