Day 20: Stinky Work

What up everyone, it’s Gautham here! We started the day off early with some delicious omelettes that were prepared by Sanjay before heading out to the office. On our way, we stopped by a local lumber store in Baroda to get a measuring stick for our toilets work during the day. We had some fun trying to fit the two meter stick inside the car, but we managed to figure it out.

Once at the office, we headed straight to Dolatpura to meet with Sumitraben and Chatrahsinbhai, our stoves and toilet partners in the community. Our team was very excited because we were able to put finishing touches on the stove that we built last week with Sumitraben. We filled in the cracks of the stove with a mud and straw mixture, and we were able to speak a lot with Sumitraben and Manjulaben, the designated stove builders in the community.

Putting finishing touches on stove with Sumitraben
Caroline and Colby with the contractor
The open toilet bins







After we finished with the stove, Keny and Colby headed over to Chatrahsinbhai’s house to meet with the toilet contractor who was helping us open the toilet’s bins. Keny and Colby felt like Michael Scott when there was a smelly accident in his office! Caroline and I stayed with Sumitraben in her kitchen to speak with her more and help her cook lunch for the day.(I’m no expert, but I made a pretty great rotla!) We headed back to the office very tired, but very happy as we had great interactions with our community partners.

Rhotla (thick millet pancake)
Cooking with Sumitraben



Before lunch we had an opportunity to receive a short yoga lesson from a visiting guru from Varanasi who teaches at the local Anganwadis. We practiced various yoga poses and ended with meditation exercises. After a great lunch, Keny and Colby headed out to Barola to hold an interview with Kusumben and Divyaben, while Caroline and I stayed back at the office to work on a final stoves presentation for the foundation.

Back at the guesthouse, we all got some very well needed relaxation from the heat with some TV and reading and then enjoyed an amazing dinner of rice, dhaar (lentils), and tindoora subji (ivory gourd) prepared by Sanjay. It was a very productive day, and we all fell asleep very quickly, ready for our last work day of the week: Saturday!

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