June 5, 2010
The first couple of workshops I participated in have mainly been for me to get to know Miguel, the bread baker and workshop facilitator, and the community members. Miguel has taught the participants various recipes for different types of bread. I have been getting to know the community members by laughing with them, attempting to talk to them in their language, Poqom, which I am slowly learning. I try to add a little dab of creativity into the activities, whether it's decorating the oven with charcoal from the fire, making faces or pictures in bread dough or drawing pictures in the flour. The community members seem to enjoy these activities, as it puts a smile on their faces.
now that the bread making workshop has ended, Miguel, the community bread maker master, went through all of the steps to obtain funding through FUNDENOR to build his own oven. Because he has funding, he wanted to only build the oven with the best materials, meaning if it isn´t local. Made of brick and cement, and some local mud, the oven was built with the help of myself and mostly his brother. I brought up the idea to Miguel of natural building, and that the best material he had was right there in front of him, mud! But I did not want to impose too much, and let him execute the project on his own, because afterall, it is his oven, and the most important is that he is motivated to build it on his own. Now that it is built and in a beautiful circular form (with the help of cement), he decided that he wanted to decorate the oven in with a mosaic. With broken mirror pieces scrounged from a glass shop, and some glue, we and community members are piece by piece putting together a mosaic of a quetzal, along with the other designs thought by miguel and other community members.