Day 23 & 25: Excavation & Iteration

Hey what’s up, hello, it’s Natasha. With Sarah not feeling well, Anjali unable to come to Baroda, and Rushil in Delhi, the team was down to three. However, today still had a lot in store.

The day started with picking up Viral from the factory and then heading straight to Dolatpura. The contractor was already in Chatrisinh Bhai’s backyard outlining the excavation space on the ground. When we got to the construction site, Sai and I checked all the measurements with a tape measure to make sure they were correct.


Before excavation started, the contractor, Prakash, cracked a coconut and placed 101 rupees with it for good luck. Seeing the digging begin was such an exciting feeling because of how much work everyone on the team has put into designing this toilet this year and the years before.


After finishing out conversations with the contractors and laborers, we went over to Sumitraben’s house to see if she would be avaliable to help build a new Chulha with a ceramic pipe on Monday. From her house, we then headed back to factory to eat lunch.

Kaylla was starting to feel the heat, so the team fell down to just two. Sai and I collected the mati and dropped it off at Sumitraben’s place for the upcoming chulha build on Monday.

Once we returned to the factory, it was time to give Mr.Harish Sheth a presentation about our project and what we have accomplished so far this trip. He listened intently and was excited about our progress.

After a long day the three of us headed back home to rest up.

Hey Guys! Anjali here now…..So today was pretty nice weather wise because it wasn’t so dusty or humid or even as hot as its been for the past couple days. This was a pleasant atmosphere since we were building a two burner stove with the ceramic chimney in Dolatpura. The problem with our old chimney made of sheet metal was that it was rapidly developing holes because of repeated heating. This time we tried to use a chimney made of ceramic material instead.


We started the day by going to Dolatpura and meeting up with Sumitraben. Sumitraben had dug up mati from the toilet dig and she decided to use that instead of the mati we’d sent on Saturday. She was really excited to try the new stove and made room for it in her house. We spent the afternoon helping her and her husband build the stove. The ceramic chimney was propped up on bricks and covered with mud to ensure proper support of the heavy new pipe. As we were building we noticed a lot of people coming around to check on the stoves and a lot of enthusiasm.


Two doors down, the toilet construction was moving along nicely. The foundation for the outhouse was completed and set to dry, the compost bin excavation has reached about 9 feet (1 ft to go!), and many of the materials have arrived. We checked all the dimensions for the bins and the quality of gravel to be put into the bins for composting. The remaining materials should be arriving tomorrow once the bin excavation is completed today. After seeing the progress that has happened just in the past two days, we are hoping that all technical and structural aspects of the toilet will be built before we leave!


One thought on “Day 23 & 25: Excavation & Iteration”

  1. THIS IS SO EXCITING! The concepts and designs of the toilet are all coming together. In addition, you guys are testing with ceramic stoves. That’s a brilliant idea because ceramic pots popular in India. Despite the heat and health problems, you guy are doing phenomenal! Stay hydrated and take in plenty of electrolytes. I hope you are making the Gatorade stop at the bazar.


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