The crew arrived just late yesterday to the site in Comalapa, Guatemala, where Long Way Home is stationed. Touring through the Technico Maya vocational school that has progressed in the past year since our last visit, we were all greatly impressed and humbled by the giant tire and trash bottle walls. “We need to be doing this in about 100 other places in the world, like, now,” stated Mike Reynolds while settling into the upper dome of a classroom.
Romeo, the future owner of this residence, has been working with Long Way Home as a foreman and will be a sustainable ambassador for his community. He was there to greet us when we arrived and expressed his gratitude straight away with a heartwarming smile.
Today we started early after breakfast to prepare and stage and organize the jobsite for the 60+ volunteers to work tomorrow. We brought all of the needed tools to the site as well as materials such as sand and gravel piles to be hauled uphill to the site.
We began leveling the 3U’s for load bearing walls and sorting through tire sizes and laying out the foundation. Tire pounding was started shortly after as many of us were eager to get started. Much of the first course of tires were packed and pounded and the first out of six courses started to get buried. The burial of the first course of tires was a last minute decision made by foreman Phil Basehart and Mike Reynolds in order to better stabilize the building. A few early interns came to the jobsite to lend a hand, get a feel for the site and meet our crew.
Rebar was sorted and bend and cut to create the framework for the first completed ferro-cement vault.
The day was ended early by some of the crew to go meet and greet with all of the incoming interns from places all around the planet. Interns were all welcomed by Earthship Biotecture, Long Way Home, and Romeo himself with a big thank you to their donations and time. They were then arranged into groups of ten with different crew members running projects such as foundation laying and the continuation of tire pounding, septic and grey water planter preparation and vault framework.