When our group arrived to Dona Aneida’s house, we were put to work right away. We were told to start making the corn-flour dough for the empanadas and to cut down a big block of queso fresco into little thin strips for its filling. The rest of use began chopping away at the onions and tomatoes for the salad. While our workspace was hot an cramped, it was not unlike any other kitchen job I’ve had in the past – except for the occasional chick chirping away as they sauntered around our heels. The making of the empanadas was a fun and humbling experience, in particular when her sun, Moises, had to break out the tortilla press to help us flatten out the dough since we did not have the same coordination or speed to make them quickly by hand.
After lunch we had the opportunity to conduct a few more interviews to get a better perspective of what locals of El Cocal think might work and what might not work when it comes to waste management. We presented a few rough proposals to them and heard what they had to say with respect to every one. What we found is that a few of our proposals was presupposing adequate waste sorting as a given, whereas the feedback we received informed us that proper disposal of materials is still a something that needs to be communicated to much of the community. It became evident that whatever system we may be attempting to establish, there needs to be an education campaign on waste disposal. Luckily, our insightful interviews allowed us to gain a better understanding of the situation.