Today has been a long day. The hotel we are in at Thika does not have air conditioning. Nor fans. A window on one end of the room but no way to get a breeze. Thankfully it has rained both nights and that has cooled things off a bit. We scrambled last night trying to locate a tank fitting for the water tank that is part of the irrigation system. The fittings ended up having to come from Nairobi. We were also meeting an engineer from the irrigation company in Thika this morning and taking him to the Kiriko school with us. So it was an early start.
I was a little concerned as it rained for several hours last night. But the soil had soaked the water up and it was in good shape to be worked. The workers above were finishing up the beds where the irrigation will go. The truck in the picture was bringing a load of lumber to the school (they are building a new dorm). It was a tad overloaded and when it got about half way up the hill (a little past where this picture ends), the front wheels started coming off the ground. The driver could not stop it and it ran back down the hill and spilled out about half the load of lumber on the road. It was really something to see. Wish my camera had been in position! They took the remaining part of the load up the hill and then came back down for the rest. Nice little bit of excitement and I’m glad no one was hurt.
This is the water tank that we are installing with the irrigation system. The engineer from the irrigation company, Victor, is in the coveralls and hard hat. He is putting a bigger hole in the tank to accommodate the new fitting by heating a piece of pipe and melting the tank. You sometimes have to use what’s available. We got the tank in place and started putting water in it. Then we got to run the lines for the drip irrigation.
Each drip line has a valve so that the lines can be individually controlled. To get started we partially filled the tank with the municipal water supply from the church. They will be harvesting rainwater from the church roof to irrigate with. EDEN is trying to help several groups in other locations with rainwater harvesting as well.
And the moment of truth:
We finished up after long and dusty day and headed down the mountain to Thika. I was glad to get a shower! We will return to the school tomorrow and set out some plants in the garden. I think kale, cabbage, and onions are on the menu right now!
The beauty of the sky has taken my breath each day I have been out of Nairobi. And as I said, the camera simply does not do it justice.