Building the Dam Story

At the end, if there is success, one wonders how. Through this wonder one discovers the story. This blog is dedicated to that discovery.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

A day of rest

Today was a day off. A day decidedly "free" in which there was bike riding, preparing a nice meal, relaxing with entertainment of my choice. It was time that "recharged" for more work, necessary is how it felt, needed as much as water itself.

When considering the workers inside the 140 degree diversion tunnels, working shifts from 4 am to 12 noon or 4 pm to 12 midnight, every single day with no day off for months at a time, the stress seems unimaginable. Four dollars a day with a buck fifty taken out of that for meals, these were overworked underpaid champions of a project that could not be recreated in the same way today.

Yet it's interesting the values at the time the dam was being built, in that the men could eat their fill of all kinds of food at every meal, but to keep their job they had to continue on, like the river itself, to meet the demands seemingly already etched before them.

Which is why the width of the tunnels, the height of the dam, all the work inspires admiration and at the same time is a reminder that such amazing feats often require a negligence of need.