We’re safely back home in the USA, but here’s a quick look back at our last days in Tanzania.
After Norma and Andres came back from their vacation, we had a jam-packed final week before we had to leave for Dar es Salaam to get new passports. We finalized a few decisions about materials (concerning columns: the vote was for eucalyptus trees with bark attached!) and spent more time on the site: taking photographs (geolocated so we can try to make a digital model of the topography), making final decisions about the placement of the Zion Home, and generally getting a better feel for where the other buildings could eventually go. We have already started thinking about the Peace Home (the Zion Home’s little brother!), and we’re trying to apply what we have learned in the process of making the Zion Home in order to make the construction of this building as smooth as possible.
We left Uyole just as the ground was getting cleared and leveled, and made sure that Andres and Putyei had the latest drawings that allow them to estimate material costs. Some decisions were put on hold until they can do some additional research on available materials (it turns out that some materials which we thought were available in Mbeya are actually not available, so we need to reconsider).
Since we’ve been back we’ve been working on making an accurate up-to-date 3d model (in Rhino) so that we can more easily see the impacts of some of our design decisions, and so that we can create nicer renderings for the Olive Branch. We have also been working on some concepts for the Peace Home as well as refining the overall master plan with the information that we are able to extract from our geolocated photos.
One highlight from our last weekend in Uyole was that we got to see the Zion Home kids perform in a show that they spent an entire month working on. It included dancing, singing, music and drama, and the kids did an amazing job!
Our few days in Dar es Salaam were pleasant, and it was very interesting to see the “other” (very urban) side of Tanzania as well. A reminder of the incredible diversity that exists in this one country!