Saturday, July 6, 2013

Back to the Farm

We are back in LC for the remainder of our time here in China.  At least Evan and I are.  The other 3 will be here until the 20th and then they head off to do their English camp.

We finished out our last few days in the village with a local contractor who busted things out so fast.  He knew his stuff and we called him the Brick Ninja.  The man was impressive.  We spent a few days with him at his house, spent a few days relaxing, and hopped back on the 6 hour bus ride back to LC where we're doing MORE crazy labor intensive work! WOO!  I'm coming home buff!

We have been working hard all week.  Mr. Fix It has us burying water lines all over the farm.  We could be digging trenches for the next month if we had the time.  So far it has been digging, burying, re-digging what we already dug because we had to add another line to it, whacking weeds away so we could lay out another line, and now on Monday we'll go back and start digging the trench that we'll be burying that line in.  FUN STUFF.

It gets muddy and dirty and some people fall a lot and others like to make really loud sound effects to help them dig and some get poked by pokey things and some go crazy trying to get boulders out of the ground.  We are quite the group.

We have been on our own for food and will continue to be for the next 2 weeks.  Poor Evan has been cooking for us (most of us have been helping when possible).  He and I took a massive shopping trip last Monday to stock up for the week and then this morning we headed into the nearest small town to go to the market and get this upcoming week's shopping done.  Market shopping is fantastic!

You can get molds of your mouth so they can make you a new set of teeth, you can buy any part of an animal you want, you can get knives, electronics, live chickens, rain boots, pretty much anything you can think of at these markets.  Market day is every 5 days and it just worked out that it fell on Saturday this week.  Jenny met up with us so it was nice to see her and nice to have her help us translate.

Pig parts anyone? 
More pig parts? Tongues? Hooves? Anyone? Beuller? Beuller?
Turtle shells. Porcupine quills. Snakes. Lizards.
My sister helping Evan buy 16 lbs of pork. Mmmhmm. Nothing makes me happier than seeing the 2 of them together. It has been a dream come true!
We ate stinky tofu.  It was much better than the stuff I had the first time, but still nothing too fancy.  We watched a documentary the other day about how they make it and the amount of work that goes into making one little piece of fermented tofu is ridiculous.

We also bought some hairy tofu that Evan might cook up later.

The highlight of the trip had to be our chickens though.  Yup.  If you haven't seen instagram or facebook yet then you haven't heard about the new additions to our little family (the 2 girls call Evan and I 'mom & dad').  Evan wanted chickens, Madi got really excited, and we have a place for them to live before we turn them into dinner so it just worked out.

We crammed 6 Americans and 3 locals into the van with the driver and his sidekick, plus our groceries for the week AND our 2 chickens AND our bag of 16 lbs of pork (which Evan has spent the last few hours cutting up with his other new knife).  We were the freak show van and I think we were all oddly happy about it all.
I'm sitting in the trunk of the van with ALL of the groceries plus another local woman's basket of groceries.
We got to celebrate the 4th of July in the most American way possible.  We had all of the American families out here, flags in the yard, football, baseball (complete with an announcer and audience), and tons of yummy food.  We had a small show of fireworks at the end of it which nicely closed out the few hours of celebrating we got to do.  It felt extremely American and I'm pretty sure we all had a blast.

Next week we might be going into a village a few hours away from here.  We've been told we could be sleeping in either a local hotel or on some kind of ground covered by an awning.  Mr. Fix It has told us that it is back woods China.  I like the work we're doing here, but I always like seeing new parts of the province so I'm up for whatever.

I have hit my 1 year mark and now I'm down to just a few short weeks before I'm back to the USA.  I am pretty excited for home at this point.  I can't wait (in a good way I think).

I'll try to put up a few more posts in the next 3 weeks.  It's the home stretch and we're all very busy, so no promises.

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