A few weeks after working at Teri's site, we headed south to our pal Adam's town to build a stove behind an Evangelical church. This project went fast because we had lots of helpers and better luck. The pastor also had a chainsaw, so cutting boards for the form was really easy. The photo above shows the huge pots the church uses for cooking communal meals. We did have to enlarge the form because we made the mistake of building it without making sure the stove would fit the pots. Anyway, it was another good experience, working with new friends and talking about cooking. These stoves, as we've said before, use less wood, concentrate the heat where it needs to be, and help the cooks breathe cleaner air. After this stove cures for 30 days, the church will put on the chimney we made from a rolled up piece of roofing zinc. The top photo shows some of our new pals.
Here's Lisa with one of our best friends, Andrew, who also lives near us and came to work on the stove. Andrew is from California.
This is Adam. He's from Texas. The hat was a good idea because the church we worked at was an hour's walk from his house. And it was hot out!
Here's the church. Inside they just built a stage. Out back there's a rancho with a zinc roof where they do the cooking. Hopefully, the many church members will want to build a mud stove at their homes. And hopefully the Catholic residents of town will stop by to see the model stove at this church.
Here we are taking off the form after we packed in the mix of mud, sand and cow manure. At this point, the stove is ready to carve (fire box and holes for the pots and chimney).
One of the spectators. The hat he's wearing is very common in the countryside, but most men turn up the front brim. This guy looks cooler with his hat his way.
This bird also watched the proceedings. He belongs to one of the half-dozen families that live around the church. He gritars, which means he can howl at you like a Panamanian man when he greets you.
Lisa and Andrew are seen here with a neighbor sifting ingredients of the mix. It's important to have a smooth mix, without rocks, so everything sticks together perfectly. Sifting is a lot of work. But like we said, we had a bunch of helpers (who now know how to build these things) and we were able to finish the job in a day. At snack time, by the way, they brought us a classic Panama treat: ice cold Pepsi from the store and fresh baked dinner rolls. Yum!