Building a house

First of all: Thanks for all donations (12 000 Euro), that made the project possible.

After working at the ship and doing a break at land, the land-program was supposed to start. My group (group 1) was the first to support the building of the house. We woke up early to have breakfast and to catch the bus. We drove one hour to the house-complex we were supposed to live in for the next two and a half days. Due to the fact that we were four adults and there were only three rooms with two beds, the girls slept in one room on the ground and the boys needed to sleep outside in tents. We all had to fight against cockroaches and small geckos.

After we arrived we were taken to the house by bus, it was a drive of only two minutes. The architect Toni already started working at the house and had built the base. The house was built out of a wood section, that was destroyed and an outer section out of stone, that is still standing after the hurricane Maria in 2017. The basement, the wooden floor and walls were already done. Our job was to build up the roof. We quickly realised that the amount of people we were, weren’t needed, because the house wasn’t that big. So just one of the adults and three to four students worked at the house. It is completely different than in Germany, every time we put a new piece of wood there, it was cut by Toni so that it gently would fit. We put on the middle wood plank and nailed it on the side supports. We started constructing the roof by building wooden planks from the middle plank to the side of the house. After we finished that, we nailed horizontal planks on it, so the roof was a nice grid of wood. We finished the first side completely. After the first hard day of working we took a bath at the coast we had seen before.

At the second day we continued with the work at the house. The rest of the students were at the garden with Brendalees oldest sun Ronald. He explained everything about the local fruits and vegetables and gave us the fruits to eat. We also brought a ton of fruits back to the Thor. They were very delicious and fresh. There were coconuts, mangos, sugar cane, ginger and a lot more I cannot name.

This day we finished the other side of the roof. For this to happen, we had to break down the old damaged roof. We also had a lot more to eat this day. After finishing this day of work, we visited a school and gave our donations of pencils, soccer-balls, blocks and more to them. We were really interested about the school and the way children learn. Like we did before lunch, at the evening of the day, we were again at the coast. We were talking into the night with Ronald.

The third and last day at the house went pretty normal, except for the fact, that the cooks did not came. So, we had to make our own breakfast and then the chefs arrived. A small misunderstanding, we didn’t say we wanted to have breakfast this morning, too. After lunch we visited an old lady selling handmade coconut-oil, pillows, dolls and a lot more. After we bought a lot of stuff we cleaned up under the house of Brendalee and sorted the building material and other stuff. We didn’t had so much time, so we quickly needed to go back, to meet the hiking group at the apartment. We waited for the other group, when we met we were very excited, the other group told us about the hiking and we told them about the progress of the house. It was like a big meeting after a couple of years of not seeing each other. Then we all listened to a song of Ronald and Henry, he did it as a goodbye for us: “We’re sailing down, to the Caribbean now! I love my Germany Crew…”. After the hard work we were transported back to the Thor by Bus.

After us the other groups continued building the house. They put plates on the roof, so it will be watertight and windows and interior walls were installed. The result was great to see and Brendalee and her family appreciated our work and were very happy.

Back at the Thor we were all happy to be back, but for our group a lot more hard work was to come…Ships work.