Carpenteering in Achham

Over the week of holiday, and continuing into this work week, we took on the task of building partitions in our community health, malnutrition screening, and antenatal care rooms.  The process involved Ryan and I hopping on a motorcycle (which promptly ran out of gas, but that’s a different story), riding down the mountain to town, and purchasing proper tools.  We found a saw without much trouble, and found a vendor who sold hammer heads.  When asked for a handle for the hammer, so that we could return to the hospital with a functional tool, she looked at us as if we were daft, and pointed outside. “Forest,” she told us.

Ryan replied with “No, we need a handle,” to which she again said “forest.”  She was clearly getting frustrated at our lack of vision.  We could not successfully convey the fact that there was no way we were going to jury-rig some stick-contraption from the forest to complete the hammer we were purchasing to build a series of walls with.  So, we left.

Over the past month, Ryan has come to know many of the local restaurant owners and artisans through his frequent adventures with hospital staff members.  Thankfully, this enabled us to go directly to the local furnituremaker, whose workshop makes Tom Brady’s look like an absolute palace.

This man knew how to make a hammer handle.  It was clear that he had made more than a couple in his day.  In a matter of 15 minutes, we had a lovely, custom-made hammer shaft, and were back on our way up the hill to get the building underway.