Home sweet home

Okay, really it’s not that big a culture shock, and going a week having to put TP in the trashcan instead of the toilet really isn’t all that bad.

The travel team is safe and sound in the states. We arrived at Walla Walla around 12:00 noon on Sunday, giving us a full afternoon for spring break! And we all made it to our classes Monday morning (at least I think so).

The end of the trip was as great a success as the beginning was. Our team traveled to Peru with the objectives of laying the groundwork for the current water project, as well as scoping out a potential new project.

With the pipeline staked, and relationships developed with the new municipality, Thursday we were left with our final objective: scope out a new project. Through experience, EWB-WWU has developed a list of the tried-and-true qualities of a successful project. We went to Peru with that list and a community application for a new project, and a mindset that we wouldn’t return home without a new project.

It just so happened that Wednesday morning we cooked up some very grand ideas for the community center we were staying at. They developed until our ideas incorporated not just the community center, but the entire community. Well, we took those ideas with us to the municipality on Thursday.

Santos, a prominent community leader, sub-cheese, as well as a mining engineer met with us Thursday morning. We were afraid our luck with the municipality might have been a fluke, but they were receptive and helpful. In fact, it turned out that our new project idea had been applied for 3 months previous to our visit! The necessary signatures were quick to find and all told we likely spent another 3 hours in the municipality.

It felt good to leave the muni on Thursday morning knowing that we had accomplished all of our tasks. We left on good terms with our project partners (perhaps better than we had hoped) and excited for the future of EWB.

Oh, and what is this new project idea that has left us so excited? Why, I’m glad you asked. However, I’m afraid that the details still need to be ironed out, and before that happens, if I told you, I’d have to kill you. I’m confident that an “official” report will come out with a full proposal soon!

-Michael Slusser