Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Final week at NMD

This week takes the prize for most intense and tiring week of my life. I headed back out to camp a week ago, along with my advisor visiting from L.A. We visited the new Tohono O'odham Cultural Center in Sells on the way, and travelled back to Arivaca along Highway 286 passing more B.P. than I have seen to date

On reaching camp we realized the wash was flowing due to recent rains, so we had to leave the car on the other side and wade in to camp. Later that week the washes were hit with some big rains, turning the entirely dry wash into a raging 8 foot deep river, carrying entire trees downstream

Our driveway become impassable

Towing out one of our neighbours and supporters of NMD

I was also (somehow) made coordinator this week, so my days involved getting up at 4.45am to wake everyone up, collecting new volunteers and showing them around, and dealing with German media, who supposedly will be running an article in German Playboy, so keep an eye out for my centerfold spread.

On Friday we also managed to get one of the trucks stuck in a wash, taking 5 hours to dig and tow it out, so there were no patrols that day

Just before leaving camp a family was found waiting alongside a road. The family comprised of two children under 10, and the mother was suffering from spinal pain and severe blisters, unable to walk any further, and needing possible evacuation to a hospital. To see an entire family close to death, lost, and incredibly distraught has been one of the toughest experiences, but knowing that I am not the one who has spent 5 days lost in the desert quickly puts your privilege in perspective, along with the ability to simply drive back to Tucson

And so ends two months with NMD, I hope to be back next summer, and that one day none of this is necessary (this year is heading for a record death toll).

No Human Being Is Illegal.

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