The Container and the Rig have been safely delivered to our shop at the Los Pinos campus. It took one solid week of negotiating by our man Berny Leonardo, to get the container released. The difficulty was caused by a mistake that we made. At the last minute before the container was shipped, we allowed a friend of the project to put some items in the container that we not on the previously sent manifest. When the customs officials opened the container at the port, they noticed this immediately and the container was impounded and a through inspection was conducted.
Berny kept at it and was able to arrange a compromise. They allowed the items into the country and we paid the duty. It was a mistake on our part and we paid for it. In total, we paid about $4000.00 to get the container into the country. This was more than we paid for the rig, but less than we paid for the previous container. In all, we were able to import both the rig and the container into the country for about $7000.00. We were expecting that the total might be at least 3 times that amount!
The container was opened at the campus and all contents were, if a bit scrambled. I don’t think that they turn the container upside down, but it seems like something near that happened. We learned a lesson which we hope not to repeat.
The first well of the season is going down at a village, Sabonetta. This village is about 6 km from the campus. At last report, our volunteer driller, Don Perry of Spanish Fork, Utah, has got our old rig making about 35 feet per day. The limestone is harder here, but the drilling is going well and the people are very happy about the prospects of having clean water to drink. We are very thankful for Don’s willingness to give of his time and money to help us provide water for the people of Guatemala.
The other rig, the one I refer to as our new one, is drilling a well in the Poptun area, at the site of a new Clinic being operated by a volunteer group called God’s Helping Hands. They have been in need for some time and now we are able to finally help them.