Tuesday, November 8, 2005

Journal, November 2 -- Rio Bravo

Each of the work teams worked under the supervision of a Mexican Maestro. A Maestro is our equivelent of a project supervisor. In Mexico, an OSHA team would explode from infraction overload! Mexican engineering and technology (or lack thereof) is very different than here in the States. Almost all work was accomplished with the use of raw human strength or fairly primitive levers and tools.

Mexico now has a new honorary Gringo Maestro. I will affectionately call him the "Loco Maestro," alias Jim Pass! Jim had never laid a block in his life, yet when the week was ended, he had kept a pace just slightly below the output of a professional mason. However, I am willing to bet that the Loco Maestro laid block with unprecedented aplomb . You had to be there to appreciate it.

Hearing Jim call for "blocko" and "cemente" in a southern accent was funnier than reading the comics. Seeing the trowel that looked like a butter knife in his monstrous hand "buttering" the blocks and setting them in place was not exactly artistic. Watching him walk on cat feet on very unstable staging, 12 feet off the ground, would never remind you of ballet!

Seeing his insuppressible good nature and ability to overcome lanquage and cultural barriers was a work of God.

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