Saipan – Day 11

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

When we headed out to our job sites in the morning, it was warm and dry.

Pete had rented another car on Tuesday night to make it more convenient for a second group to go to a different house, so he drove Daniel and John David to Ron’s house so the three of them could continue laying block.

I worked with Micah, Don, Blake & Jay to finish the soffits and the ridge caps on the roof of the house we had worked on the day before. We were finished by 9 am, so we started packing up our tools to go to the next job site. Just as we finished and were ready to leave the job site, the sky turned very dark and we experienced severe thundershowers, so we contacted Pete and we decided to get something to eat until it finished raining.

We stopped at an IHOP, where we had some coffee and some of us had something to eat. I ordered a banana & Nutella crepe with whipped cream and hazelnut topping. It was very good. When we finished, it was still raining a little, but we went back to Ron’s house and worked on re-enforcing the scaffolding before deciding that it would not be able to accomplish much in the rain, so we headed back to camp.

On the way back we checked out the next house that we will be working on. The block walls on the house are mostly intact but the roof and a few side walls, windows and doors are all missing. There will be a lot of work required to make this house liveable again. We met the owner and she was happy to see us even though we weren’t going to start on her house until tomorrow.

When we got back to camp, we cleaned and organized the tools on the truck before taking our showers. Before our evening, meal, Pete, Ed and Mary went to pick up some more groceries.

After another delicious meal, a couple of FEMA representatives came to talk to us and the “World Renew ” group, about filling out some forms and to answer questions about the work being done on the island. They gave us some history about the islands and explained the diversity of people that live here. The population consists mostly of people from Philippian decent, however there are many other cultures represented on the island. Catholicism is the main religion, which resulted from the Spanish influence many years ago, although there are several other religious organizations, such as the Mormons, here, as well. They also pointed out that there is a labour force of approximately 800 people on the island and the building of a local casino requires 1000 people so that, even if the local residents could get FEMA money to help rebuild their homes, they can’t afford the labor rates, which are exceptionally high. That is why they are using organizations such as MDS to help rebuild the houses.

It was unfortunate that it rained all day, off and on. Hopefully it will be drier tomorrow so that we can get some work done, however, there are several storms at sea that appear to making there way in our direction, so there is more rain in the forecast.

One thought on “Saipan – Day 11

  1. So sorry the rain had to stop your work! 🙁 But hopefully it brought a little cooler temperature. Thank you for blogging about the locals and their decent/ religion. So glad Daniel could be there with you and he is enjoying it as well! ☺

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