Saturday, August 2, 2008

Day 20 - Building prototypes in the workshops

Today found the ropeway transport team, among many others, deep within the confines of D-lab and the other workshops. The level of dedication shown by the participants at this crucial stage of the design process is inspiring and has left the organizers quite optimistic that every team will have some concrete results to present to the public at the final presentations next Wednesday. Not even the prospect of a soccer game could lure Pilo away from his welding, although I must say he was tempted! About twenty of us did go in for a game of soccer, playing for two hours in the torrential rain, with Tombo Banda in flying form at the head of our attack!

Alvaro dissects some bike parts for the Ropeway Transport team

Thankfully, the weather cleared up for our barbecue at the Kresge pits. We provided participants with hot dogs, burgers and the all important veggie food for those of that persuasion and we also gave them the chance to silk screen their own IDDS T-shirts. Rather than simply ordering the t-shirts printed we decided, in keeping with the spirit of IDDS, to make the screen itself and allow each participant to smooth the IDDS logo on to the front of the black t-shirt's themselves! We plan to screen the design for the back of the t-shirt later in the week.

Lamine and Amy work together to screen t-shirts

Lamine with his freshly screened IDDS T-shirt

This was followed by the widely acclaimed Charcoal Olympics. This is an event whereby participants aim to see how many solid charcoal briquettes they can make out of ground charcoal within a thirty second time frame. Last year, Miguel Chaves, our favorite Brazilian, caused controversy by defeating the previously unchallenged world champion, Amy Smith. The level of tension among participants was high as they each battled through the individual heats to reach the final, where the champion of IDDS 2008 would be decided.

One of the early heats!

Andres, Winnie and some Charcoal War Paint

Bernard, Rafael and Limbor were the early pace-setters in the heats before Sumit Pahwa threw down the gauntlet with a truly Olympian score of five briquettes. The stage was then set for the final showdown with Amy, Miguel, Sumit, Joshua and the "pretender to the throne", Anuj Nanavati, taking their places around the box of powdered charcoal. After a frantic thirty seconds, and a few false starts, Sumit was declared the overall champion of the 2008 Charcoal Olympics. Sumit was understandably emotional during his acceptance speech and he thanked his parents, his friends and his mentor, Chaves, for helping him reach this pinnacle of sporting achievement. Pahwa was quick to distance himself from comments linking him to performance enhancing drugs and can now enjoy the remainder of his IDDS experience safe in the knowledge that he can call himself, at least until 2009, the undisputed charcoal champion.

Sumit psyches himself up before the Olympics

No comments: