Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Comings, Goings, And Credit Where Credit Is Due

On Saturday we went to our grandson's high school graduation party. His parents have a house in New Braunfels on the Comal River. Their back yard slopes down to the water, and affords a great view of the masses tubing down the river.

Sunday we picked up our daughter at George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston. She was returning from a volunteer trip to Peru.

Hidden high up in the Andes Mountains are remote villages where volunteers work alongside village families to build greenhouses that allow the villagers to extend the short growing season to increase the amount and variety of food they produce each year.
Building the greenhouses involves stacking aboba, or bricks made from mud and straw, and mixing mud, or barro, to seal them together. Shifting the aboba was tough work, but our teams powered through. Once the adobe were stacked, they were smoothed and covered in barro, and another layer was placed on top. Needless to say, everybody got pretty muddy. Making the barro was a tiring experience, but well worth it...
Check out the mountains in the background. Click to embiggen if necessary.
It wasn't all work, however. After the greenhouses were finished they went mountain biking, hiking/backpacking through the mountains to Machu Picchu, and then ziplining downhill to natural hot springs, followed by white water rafting down to Cusco. From there it was a short flight to Lima, and then back to the States.

So our daughter got home Sunday. Monday we took our son to the airport for the start of his summer semester abroad. He'll be spending a month or so at the University of Stirling in Scotland. I feel much more comfortable having him at a school in Europe than I did having my daughter roaming around South America. I was on pins and needles the whole time she was gone, but Thank God she came home safely.

BTW, my wife and I will be heading to Scotland in about a month to visit him. No point in letting the boy enjoy all that single malt by himself...

On an unrelated note, but giving credit where credit is due, I'd like to acknowledge a couple of corporate good citizens. Our part of Central Texas was hammered by storms and floods over the Memorial Day weekend. Recovery efforts are ongoing. In fact, another body was found yesterday. People lost their lives, homes were washed away, bridges and roads were destroyed - all in all, a tragic situation

Often overlooked in the headlines are the little things that help people restore some semblance of normalcy. Case in point:
Tide is at Walmart in San Marcos, and letting people who have been affected by the flood come wash their clothes for free from 8 am - 6 pm today through Friday and maybe Saturday. If anyone needs to come wash their clothes its full service.

I remember how much better clean clothes (especially socks!) made me feel when I was out in the field in the Army. I can only imagine what a difference it makes for people who have lost everything. Kudos to Tide and Walmart.


I almost forgot to give credit as well to Anheuser-Busch. They shifted production at one of their breweries from beer to water to be distributed to flood victims in need of clean drinking water.
The production of water began last week and ramped up on Thursday. The first shipment of about 50,000 cans of water should be delivered to Texas and Oklahoma in the next couple of days. 

This is the latest effort along these lines by the brewer of Budweiser, Bud Light and Michelob beers, which has distributed about 73 million cans of drinking water since 1988.
 It's ironic that in the midst of too much water, one of the greatest needs is for even more water, albeit potable. In any case, hats off to Anheuser-Busch.


Old NFO said...

Glad she's back okay. And kudos to Tide and Anheuser-Busch! Where you're going Glasgow and Edinburgh are an easy reach... Enjoy!

Bag Blog said...

We did the hiking, biking, and hot springs on our way to Machu Picchu too. I'm glad your daughter was able to have fun and see the sites. And doing something nice for people is okay now and then too. My pics from Peru are on my blog - last June.

We were in Scotland in the winter. Someday I want to go back and see the sites in the summer - when the Whiskey Trail is open.

CenTexTim said...

NFO and BB - We won't be in Scotland that long. We have other commitments here at home, plus we'll spend a few days with friends in Wales before heading off to Scotland - a couple of days in Stirling, and three in Edinburgh. We will probably visit a distillery or two, but I don't think we'll be able to do the Whiskey Trail justice.