We had breakfast and spent the morning at the “office.” We talked briefly with Nelly about the rest of the day. Rick talked also with Juan Jose about Friday’s meeting with Maria. We may possibly set up a “Creativity Session” to come up with some proposals on the Big Question “how to provide Operations & Maintenance for the treatment system.” We have some ideas but we need to local perspective to find a workable solution. Late in the afternoon we met with Eirk Martinez (UABJO) to discuss how to complete the first round of water testing. We were then invited to “sit-in” on his final class where his students presented their results of monitoring six treatment plants in the greater Oaxaca valley.
Tuesday January 27, 2010
We had to get up early since class started at 8am. We listened to the six presentations, and Nelly gave us a running overview (in English). I am amazed at her ability to do this, and I am getting better at understanding written text :). Throughout the morning (until about 11 AM), Erik continuously stressed the advantages of aerobic systems over anaerobic. We concluded that there are lots of opportunities to improve the systems and monitoring. On the down side, only one treatment plant was functioning at a nearly acceptable level.
We then acquired all the things we needed to take the black water samples at Santo Domingo. This included: 5L bleach water (to clean up with) rubber boots, gloves, and sample bottles. We arrived at Santo Domingo at about 12:30 (we will post a UTube in a few days showing the collection process so look for the link in a future post). The collections went off without a hitch, and only took about 30 minutes to complete.
To get back to the main road (to get a cab back to Oaxaca) we took separate Took-Tooks, and ended up in different places. Thanks to cell phones we reunited and found a cab back to the city. We then took the bus to UABJO to deliver the samples.
By then it was close to 3pm and WAY PAST OUR LUNCH TIME! We stumbled out of the lab and had a quick lunch near UABJO. A short bus ride back home and we all took a much too short siesta before our meeting at 5pm with Jorge (Maria’s technical advisor). I was not feeling well, so I kept sleeping while Stan and Susan met Jorge at “The Hub”. Because of my (Rick) sinus infection, I stayed in bed and tried to sleep it off.
The HUB turned out to be a good place to host the meeting with Jorge. He gave a PowerPoint presentation of a proposal he made to Santo Domingo Barrio Bajo Etla of an anaerobic waste-water treatment system to solve their wastewater problems. He did not address the issue of the burned garbage but said they were separate issues. We talked at length about maintenance, costs, life-span, sources of revenue, aerobic versus anaerobic systems and a myriad of other issues for two hours until Megan, our translator, called time. It was a very informative meeting and provided much food for thought. We walked Nelly home and went home ourselves.