Construction Begins in Earnest

After a night of pouring rain we wake to find out that our park site is completely flooded. Fortunately, we hear that Tanner and Garrett were up and out early, working to drain the site. They have been working to prepare the site for a day or so to help us start work today, so they knew to cut channels for the trapped water to flow freely towards the Pacific so we can begin to build the foundation of our Yantai park.

 

Before we head to the site, Chuck and Kyle give us a thorough explanation of construction-site safety. They explain how to use the tools and materials we will be working with, and inform us of dangers we might otherwise not be aware of. They scare us just enough, but not too much, to ensure we will act and move with conscious caution. These tools will help us create the beauty we want to share through this park, so there is no need to be fearful of them; just respectful of their power and grateful for their help.

 

After our discussion, we each receive a bright red, heavy, and perfect bicycle. From now on we can cruise together from the university to the park on two major roadways; a fairly direct route.

 

OK, we’re off, but not for long. Halfway down the first road we hear a siren. We look up and see a street-cleaning vehicle moving toward us, spraying water like a fire truck across the very path we’re traveling. We try to move out of the way, but are caught without much room so we brace ourselves for the spray. The water brushes past, and we’re freshly baptized by Chinese street water! We all laugh hysterically and then continue onward...

 

At our site we get straight to work. So much to be done! We are acutely aware of the limited number of days we have in which to finish,  yet we still must spend most of this day getting organized and clear on how to lay a foundation for the entire park. Our group’s energy ebbs and flows in sync with periods of action and inaction. A stormy Pacific is our backdrop today, and a dense cloud cover sends down rain on and off as we are filling trenches, cutting stakes, carrying wood, and calculating  dimensions.

 

Our labor takes on a natural rhythm, and we soon see that a steady pace is necessary. In the long days to come, we must move closer to being mindful of our bodies and our spirits so that our own ebb and flow will gracefully match that of the Pacific.

 

Our labor takes on a natural rhythm, and we soon see that a steady pace is necessary. In the long days to come, we must move closer to being mindful of our bodies and our spirits so that our own ebb and flow will gracefully match that of the Pacific.

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