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Comprising Spagus (derived from Asparagus), or Cam. Previously rural banker and farmer that has decided to ditch his tie and gumboots in exchange for a backpack and shaved head. Partnered with Shroom (derived from Mushroom), or Cat. Formally a country/city/country girl that has left behind the world of policy consulting and has ditched her high heels for some comfortable (yet stylish) footwear to support a wee bit of globetrotting through 2010 and 2011. We hope you enjoy following the travels of SpaguShroom through Europe, North America and South America!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Pisco, PERU - Week 4

Our fourth week at PSF provided new challenges for us both. We returned to Victor’s home to continue the project and to lift his modular home onto the new pad of concrete. Gathering a large group of volunteers we managed to move it in two pieces. Many hands made the actual shifting of the building light work but the real test was joining it back together without destroying the thin wood that it is constructed from.

We also cut a new window, constructed and hung a new door and rewired the home. It was fiddly work and took longer than we expected. But as the week flew by we got on with the job and enjoyed spending more time with the family and eating more delicious Peruvian cooking for lunch.

By the time Thursday rocked around Cam was still feeling very unwell and it was time to visit the doctor. Thinking it was once again Giardia he had a test done and purchased the antibiotics to treat it. However later that afternoon he was called in for further tests and a doctor’s visit to discover he has Typhoid. Typhoid is commonly found in this part of South America and is transmitted through faecal contaminated food and water. Although we had the prevention shot before we left NZ we have since found this is only 50-70% effective. For the remainder of the week Cam had to lay very low - sleeping a lot, trying to remain rehydrated and letting the drugs do their thing. He will return to the doctor next week.
At times like this home and the comfort of reliable treatment (in english) feels very far away. However we feel very supported at PSF, Cam had a Spanish friend escort him to the doctor and we are able to talk to a couple of others here who have had Typhoid before.
As Cam is off work indefinitely I took over as project manager. This is particularly difficult having no construction knowledge apart from what I have learnt here so far. But we continued on and with the help of the skilled people here at PSF (and Cam’s detailed drawings and job lists) we managed to install the plumbing for a toilet, shower and laundry block for the family. They currently do not have these facilities so it is a great pleasure to be able to provide this in addition to the renovations to their house. I spent one and a half days with a plumber who set up the pipes underground but the installing of the toilet, shower and laundry is up to me. Next week should be interesting.

Saturday night was our Mexi-80s party. It was a fantastic night including a feed of Mexican, Sangria and even a giant Piñata. There were some brilliant costumes and we had a great time dancing and kicking back after a tough week. Obviously Cam took it easy but managed to dress up and hang around before the others went out into town.

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