Monday, June 9, 2008

A Rookie's Perspective

The trip has been very rewarding so far. Everything is so different and new. On the way to Bakang, you can stop anywhere and stare for hours and you still won't be able to take it all in. The feeling is so surreal. I've seen all sorts of amazing African landscapes on TV and in magazines, but I never thought I would be standing in the middle of one. Its almost an out-of-body experience. The food is different here too. Their diets consist of a lot more vegetables than I'm used to. They still have meat, its just in smaller portions than what we have in the States. Transportation is so much different than at home. A two hour walk to get somewhere here is short. When people are in a hurry, they take a "moto," aka a small bore, four-stroke Chinese motorcycle. It's unbelievable waht they can fit on the back of those bikes. In Baffousam, I saw a moto carrying another motorcycle in between the driver and the person sitting on the back of the seat (if that made any sense). It was certainly a site to see. I wish I could have gotten a picture.

I strongly believe that Cameroonians can do what ever they put their minds to. I know this because they are always trying to learn and understand whats going on around them. As soon as someone starts building or taking something apart, a crowd immediately surrounds them. Their problem solving skills are great too. Guy, our driver, was able to fix the Solar Team's boken blow torch after tinkering with it for a few minutes. He also fixed their generator with the help of a random villager who happened to be walking by when their generator failed. That is why I feel like the slow sand filters will really catch on in Bakang. The people will see how we make them and immediately learn how to do it themselves. They are so good at using the materials they have at hand to solve a problem. I know they will be able to continue to make these filters after we leave.

I can't wait to see how many great engineers will come out of Cameroon in the future with their new-found source of life: clean water.


Enjoying our borderless adventure
-Taylor

5 comments:

mother sagett said...

So nice to hear from Cameroon - the Rookie's perspective was enjoyable - each report provides a new twist to the details and makes us feel as though we are exeriencing the sites you describe. Miss you all and look forward to your next post. Lots of love and best wishes. Stay safe!

Mom&Dad Trick said...

We've really enjoyed reading all the updates. Keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

taylor-

nice to see you enjoying the trip so far all I have to say is this

TIM HOWARD IS AMAZING!

from,
your roomate

be champions

boyfriend sagett said...

You sir, are a poet.

Lizo said...

Cameroon sounds amazing. I'm pretty jealous of all you guys. Keep updating!