The rains have arrived in the Andean
highlands! And everyone is very pleased that the rainy season has
started with some vigor. The last two years have brought scant rain, so
the “normal” onset of rain this year is welcomed.
To make this newsletter an easy read, I’ll just do bullets – I know how this season can be a bit frenetic….
* A visit from Jaclyn, a university student of Kings College London and
majoring in Latin American Studies, was warmly welcomed at the end of
November. Jaclyn, who is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese, will be
returning to the Project to take photos and chat with the ladies. We
are hopeful she will write up an essay on her impressions that we will
share with you.
* The new two storey workshop now has window
frames in and wooden floors installed on the second floor. The
workbenches have been transferred into the area where the ceramics will
* The Spring garden is blooming with all sorts of
organic vegetables and the large agricultural plots on the terraces
have lovely shoots of corn and many varieties of potatoes. The flower
garden is brimming with all kinds of brightly colored flowers and the
scotch broom is happily branching out along one of the terraces.
* The third terrace is nearly completed. This terrace walls a plot of
land, now flat and ready for the cultivation of the plants used by
Q’ewar for the dying of the alpaca yarn used in the production of the
Q’ewar doll clothing. Like the other two terraces, this one is being
partially built and partially uncovered, with stones put into place in
* There is now a little patio next to the
doll workshop. The wall which supported the workshop was showing signs
of stress with the current heavy seasonal rain and reinforcement was
needed. So, the little patio is now a lovely addition for those who
would like to sit near the garden and look at the magnificent vista of
the Andahuaylillas Valley spread below.
* A new line of
Q’ewar products has been introduced! Senora Charo has made prototypes
of an infant cap, sweater and booties in fine alpaca yarn. They are
VERY beautiful and we hope this new line will be successful!
* The Co-director of the Q’ewar Project, Lucy, will continue her work
in the municipal government as “Regidora” or assistant to the elected
Mayor. But this next 4 year term she will serve as the voice of her
opposition party. One of her jobs is to make sure that he walks the
straight and narrow in his office as Mayor. Lucy told me that many of
the tactics of his party were very corrupt, buying votes of the poor
highland people with bribes of money, food or alcohol. (Peru has an
endemic disease of alcoholism amongst its population.)
Q’ewar House will soon be connected to the municipal sewage system.
This will be yet another upgrading for the Project land.
Finally, in this time of the rains, the 3 year old fruit trees will be
giving of their fruits for the first time. Q’ewar has peach, salco (a
berry to make marmalade with), and capuli (an indigenous fruit eaten
fresh ripened) trees. As with all of the vegetables and fruits on the
Q’ewar land, all is free to the workers at Q’ewar and nothing is ever
sold in the market.
So that’s the news! Hope you have enjoyed
the read. All of us at Q’ewar extend our warmest wishes and greetings
to each and every one of our readers – for a most blessed season of
Light and Warmth.
Carmen – for Julio and Lucy and all the ladies and gents of the Project Q’ewar.