Friday, January 21, 2022
It was another wonderful week. It began with another inspirational worship service with the ECHO Crew Monday morning. It was so great for our team to become part of the ECHO community over the past three weeks. After devotion we all started back to work, basically where we left off on Thursday.
Max and Anne returned to the Appropriate Technology Center bathroom and finished the removal of the ceiling and declared that job complete only to find that we also had to install the new ¾ inch plywood on the walls and ceiling. We worked with two ECHO volunteers on that and made two new friends. Anne moved onto other work and Steve took her place for the last few days. Our portion of the bathroom work was completed Thursday morning. The plumbing and the rest will be completed by other ECHO volunteers. We learned at a Volunteer Brown Bag Lunch on Wednesday that Worldwide ECHO has only a total of 75 employees. Greater than 50% of the work of ECHO to end hunger around the world is done by volunteers. Pretty amazing and we feel honored to be part of their team.
Also finished this week was the bridge between the visitor center and the library. A good portion of the team worked on that bridge at some point so I won’t list names for fear of missing someone. However, the final four that spent so much time on that project were Dan and Marlis, Phil and Steve. They did an excellent job rebuilding the bridge.
Almost everyone on the team worked on the new plant tables at some point. The highlight of that work this week was the moving the plants off the rusty old tables, removing the old table tops, then moving the new structures into place and placing the plants on the new tables. The last two tables were quite large and HEAVY! Eight of our twelve team members moved the first one and had to stop and put it on the ground and rest numerous times while moving from where they were built to the propagation area. We were all huffing and puffing and straining and didn’t know how we were going to move the last one into place. Susan enlisted the help of our two ECHO volunteers who worked with us on the bathroom. It was totally amazing. None of us could have imagined the difference it made to have two more helpers. It lightened the load for us all to a level we could much more easily handle. We all agreed there was a big lesson to be learned for all of us. It would even make a good sermon. More hands certainly made the work so much lighter.
There was also a lot more accomplished at the A-frame cabin. We totally stripped the second floor. All the appliances and cabinets that were removed from the walls were taken to storage. All the trim was removed, the tile removed from the walls and all the floor tile broken up and removed. The tile was very labor intensive work done with sledge hammers, scrapers, pry bars and brute strength. One half of the flooring was on top of cement board that was screwed down with hundreds of screws that also had to be removed. Lots for sore arms and backs at the completion of that work. Most of the team worked on that big project at some point.
There was also more pressure washing this week again with most of us doing that at some time too. We were glad to be able to get the buildings looking better in preparation for the 40th birthday celebration for ECHO taking place in February. Wish we could be here for that celebration. Wednesday night we had a team dinner at the campground with every one contributing to the potluck. It was a time for the team and celebration for all we accomplished. Thursday we celebrated again with ECHO as they treated us to a Chick-Fil-A luncheon. Another special time with the team and our ECHO friends. This was one of those projects where it’s very had to say goodbye to everyone. But it had to occur and we left Riverside Campground this morning and arrived in Tampa shortly before lunch.
We are boondocking at the state fairgrounds and attending the RV Show until Sunday when we will be back on the road to Alabama. It’s been a great week! Safe travels to all the NOMADS on the road this weekend.