Sunday, December 21, 2008
Forgive my laziness, it is hard for me to sit and write in this Blog because so much happens every day it is hard to focus and think of what is the most important to write about. I have decided to write only on the progression of TFI in this blog, and if you want to know personal things, well just get in touch through whatever social networking device it it that you prefer. Otherwise, mail in the form of letters, care packages, goods and services, notwithstanding will be accepted. Just contact me if you want my address.
I have been making some headway in the development of my project. I have broken it into 2 components: Educational, and Production. The educational aspect will include the erection of a greenhouse, (hopefully) in the form of a free one from the Dept of Agriculture of Sikkim. Everything is politics here, so I am leaving that aspect up to Taktse Board. Ideally, the greenhouse will have a diversity of crops in it, for educational purposes. An end of the greenhouse will have a concrete floor in it for tool storage/ transplanting and potting activities. I would also include a vermicompost component, which has gained a lot of support here in Sikkim. I have designed a propagation house which is roughly 8' x 20'. The design is for a south facing structure, with a solid back wall made from rocks on-site, and mortar. A knee-wall of the same sort will surround the base of the structure. I would like to have a frame made for the window part made from welded steel. The "clear part" will be composed of polycarbonate sheeting and will cover the main south facing wall, along with appx. 75% of each end wall. This structure will be used for seeding trays and mixing potting mix. Compost box may or may not be adjacent to it.
The Production aspect of TFI will be strictly for the production of crops in high demand in the Kitchen at the school. These include cabbage, carrots, radishes, Mustard greens, cilantro, and mint. The site for this is pending, and I need it to be approved by the board. It is on the opposite side of the school, where the support and kitchen staff live.
Things have been moving slowly, but it is because I came at the end of school. I feel like I will have some more focus now in the winter. I am very pleased I arrived when I did because I got a chance to know all of the teachers and some of the kids on a personal level. When next year starts I will ready to jump right in without acclimation.
This brings me to my next point which is about Winter Camp. This is a program which is compulsory for 7 and 8th graders, and optional for other students. This starts Jan 27 for the kids. However, the Bhutanese kids will not be able to attend since they live so far away. I have been asked to go to Bhutan on Dec 28th to help facilitate a Winter Camp for the students there. I am extremely excited because as a "tourist", foreigners have to pay min. 200$/day for a visa in Bhutan! I will be going as an educator, and subsequently have to pay nothing.
That's all for now. I miss everyone, but I am loving every minute of being here.