A video of the land from February 5.

Just a description of what’s happening in this video:

Ude Dai is up on the sawhorses about to start placing concrete in a sloped shape for the roof of our columns.

Next up, Laxmin is about to cut into the concrete slabs (upon which Ude will place a roof) to create a drip edge.

Then, Juda Malla is up a ways putting outdoor primer on our completed roofs. This video was from yesterday, and today I had him start painting them in color. I have chosen an irrational number known as “pi” and purchased 10 different paint colors – each block corresponds to a digit, which then corresponds to a color. So, 3.14159 becomes: dark green, light green, red, light green, blue, orange, and so on… until the 57th digit of pi (we’ll have 57 columns). I am beyond excited to see it when the colors are all placed.

After that, you can see the slab that we poured for our metalworking shop. I am ecstatic to get this up and running – we have so many metalwork that needs to be done (for our fence, making new formwork, building a trolley for my motorbike), and I can hardly wait to no longer rely on the expensive and very unreliable metalworkers around Surkhet. I went to Nepalgunj 2 weeks ago and purchased $1,500 of welding equipment. I then ordered wood to build the workshop. The manager told me it would take 2 days. 2 weeks later – still no wood. Thus we decided to build the shop from metal, which makes sense since… its a metalworking shop.

Next: Rammed earth corners are typically chamfered to increase their strength. This is done by putting a triangular piece of wood in the corner of your formwork. I set up the skilsaw according to Pete’s idea to get nice straight cuts on these piece. Unfortunately, the blade was 1/8″ too short, so I have to finish up the cut by hand.

Then, you can see Samdi, Krishna Kancha, and Candra Bahadur (which means “brave moon”) working on a new column. In the shot, Krishna is using the dahnti (meaning “teeth) to roughen the finished layer of rammed earth before adding the next layer. In this way, they interlock.

Finally, there are the foundations waiting for ramming along the edge of the road. This is a 3 foot foundation of stone masonry and topped with a concrete block that we place bricks on. The two courses of brick are staggered by a half-inch so there is a lip to put our formwork on.

And that’s that!

For some extra hilarity, turn on the subtitles to this video and look what YouTube has put in for my commentary.

Also, about 250 feet away from me, under and across the suspension bridge, is a ton of other work. Including a 500 foot long retaining wall replacing last year’s gabion wall and the near-completed foundation for the Middle School, as well as the foundations holes that have been dug for the Kitchen, Admin, and Library. So, so much happening, and we’re only just getting started. Woo!


3 comments on “A video of the land from February 5.

  1. jane says:

    so cool to see the video as it makes EVERYTHING come alive. it’s just as i imagined from your many detailed descriptions in the past. bravo, luke! just an aside–i’m jealous of your nepali weather with short sleeves and sandals. it’s probably about 60 degrees warmer there!

  2. Josh says:

    That’s really interesting and fun. And the stream-of-consciousness monologue you read when you turn on captions–wow! James Joyce and Bob Dylan are dying of jealousy.

  3. cassidia8 says:

    haha the ebay subtitles are amazing! I especially like ” I am with your block.”

    Pete and I love the idea of painting the fence posts according to the digits of Pi. We agree that it is a very YOU decision.

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