22 August – More mud, more hospital

I spent another day digging out a larger room in the hospital while Melanie rested at the hotel.  There seemed to be more volunteers today.  I must admit that I was near my limit in wielding a shovel so I spent most of the day one the wok crew.  As the young men shoveled the mud into woks, everyone else passed the full woks, one to the next, down the line until the last person threw the mud through the window.  There would be a bulldozer coming later to clear the area outside.  Eight hours of passing heavy mud in this altitude is pretty darn hard work but we had fun.  Most people chatted about everything under the sun as we worked.  One of the main topics though was definitely about the smell of the mud.  How did it get so bad?  I’ll never know.  Occasionally, something like a child’s doll or a shoe would be dug up.  That usually silenced everyone for a moment as it got passed down the line in the wok.  Fortunately, we never dug up anything grimmer than that.  By late afternoon, I was happy to be going back to the real world.  I walked back to the hotel and collapsed onto the bed. 

Those are prayer wheels on the top that are supposed to be in the space below the platform. 
That space (also in the photo below) was at shoulder level when I walked past this spot four weeks earlier.


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