Day 11: Busy-ness

Hi everyone! Sarah here. We had a very productive day today. Our morning started off in the Setco office with me creating data collections sheets for later, Rushil and Natasha doing some re-calculations and answering questions about the toilet dimensions, and Sai and Kaylla troubleshooting picture-editing software.

After that, we headed out to Dolatpura to talk to our partner families. We first visited Sumitraben, who had started cooking lunch, and asked her if she could light the double burner left by the Spring Break travel team, so we could take some temperature measurements. This was the first time we’ve ever brought any equipment into the village, so everyone was fascinated when we pulled out a laser thermometer and thermocouple. We recorded many temperatures on the chimney for lifecycle analysis purposes.

During the whole data collection process, Natasha picked up on snippets of the women & children’s conversations which included them excitedly planning on asking Kaylla to take their picture. And sure enough, as soon as we were done, everyone wanted their picture taken! It’s really impressive to me how comfortable they were around the team, and especially around Kaylla. Sai and Rushil went out to the front of Sumitraben’s house to toss the Frisbee and play with the soccer ball with the younger boys. We also brought out a mehndi/henna cone to replace the one that they used to give me and Natasha mendhi last week. It was immediately put to use on Natasha’s other wrist.

We were initially spending time playing because we were waiting on Chatrasinh bhai to get back to have toilets discussions, but it was getting to the hottest part in the day, and many of our team members were starting to feel the effects of the heat, so we decided it would be best to postpone talks until tomorrow. We returned to the van with a bag full of lapedo (aka cow dung mixed with red clay) to finish of the stoves at the factory and another filled of corn husks for fuel when we start our validation testing. We returned to the comfort of the Setco office’s air conditioning, chilled bottled water, and lunch at the canteen.

Rushil, Natasha, and Sai then had a meeting with a civil engineer/contractor to get feedback on the structural integrity of the toilet design. They slowly went through the whole design and received more feedback from the engineer to make the design structurally sound. We will be finalizing the documentation of the design with all the feedback and forwarding it to a contractor for a cost estimate!

While they had that conversation, Kaylla was finally able to start editing some of our pictures because all her technology decided to work! Well, for the most part. Going was a little slow, but progress was made, so go back and start checking those older blog posts for pictures! At the same time, I started processing the temperature data we collected and organized them into some impressive Excel tables (if I do say so myself).

But we weren’t done yet! After all of that, Sai, Kaylla, and I went back into the heat to finish our stoves by putting the lapedo mixture onto the now dried stoves. Sai and I had a “fun time” patching the minor cracks that had formed by plastering them with cow poop while Kaylla watched and directed in amusement. Meanwhile, Rushil and Natasha finished up their emails and discussed the earlier talk with the civil engineer. We headed back after a long day to some good laughs and tasty food.

One thought on “Day 11: Busy-ness”

  1. Glad to hear you all are splitting up to get work done!! And doing calculations and integral and validations and lifecycle assessment. This all sounds so legit!!! Reading these posts makes me miss Gujarat so much!!! Please send my love to everyone there.

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