Okay, so I want to start off by saying that it feels amazing to be blogging on an actual computer. It wasn't easy to get one, but our friend Evelio came through for us. Just as amazing is the fact that I managed to figure out to navigate through our blog on my very own. Go Melissa.
We've had an extremely productive 5 days (4 if you consider that Monday was a travel day). We've completed our soil analysis (yay for rocks!), some water testing, hydrology, the topo...I'm sure there was more in there, but it's been a very busy 5 days and the rest escapes me. With the technical data collecting coming to a close we've had the opportunity to shift our focus towards building a strong relationship with the community. We've been lucky to have April and Evelio to introduce us around San Jose and we're looking forward to meeting with people in the surrounding area this weekend and early next week.
As I mentioned before we completed our soil sampling and in situ analysis Wednesday. Of the 3 boring holes we attempted, 2 hit rock right away. This is great news. The 3rd was only a potential site for the abutment and was 5 feet of soft wet clay. While it's an unfortunate material to bear on, it was a great excuse to play with our dynamic cone penetrometer that we hauled here from Delaware. As if that weren't reason enough to forgive it's lack of compressive strength, the hand augering that this system requires gave members of the community of San Jose a great excuse to help.
Today, the surveyer was on site gathering data for our topographic analysis. Peter Waugh and I went down to the river with him with the intention of helping, but were once again beat to it by members of the community who were excited to be involved. So instead we obvserved the data collection and conversed with locals to gather more information on what life is like in San Jose. We were also lucky enough to be shown a "short cut" to the river. For the record, a "short cut" in Guatemala apparently means "a path that is longer, takes more time and is more difficult to walk." Such fun. :-)
I need to pass the computer along while we still have battery power and internet access, but I look forward to keeping you all updated on our progress. Go Team Guatemala!!
ps: sorry for any typos, the spellcheck is set for spanish and tells me everything is wrong. Unfortunate.