Monday, October 23, 2006
Working in Lod's Shuk
I spent the morning visiting potential clients with Eddie. In Lod we went to a mefarek ofot, a chicken butchering business which suffers from serious sanitary problems and is about to be closed by the Ministry of Health. There is a great lake of sewage in front of the place, which the municipality cannot repair, because it is not current maintenance (they neither do current maintainance) but is an investment in infrastructure (takziv tabar - extraordinary budget) and they have no investment budget (in fact, Lod Municipality hardly pays its employees). The owner said that I should make a plan and bring a kablan - contractor - and each of the ten owners around the place (it cannot be called a park or plaza) would be willing to put in 1000 shekel each to repair the sewage. It is near the shuk of Lod, an Oriental dirty open market, full of colorful/colored Israelis. I think all that is needed is to replace or repair a sunken manhole and replace some 20 m 6 inch pipe. It is strange that many of my clients want me to build my projects, they want full complete service, they dont want me to plan for them but to do the actual work.
The chicken butchery thing has two separate connections to the municipal line, when I went to investigate I found a 40 - 50 cm shallow manhole with a big black plastic bag just recently inserted that was causing a flooding (see pics above). Someone has recently sabotaged the line, with the idea of causing trouble to the chickenman (he probably thought I was a health inspector). Lod is a mixed population town, Palestinian Arabs (many hamoolot - clans - descendants of former mashtapim - collaborators - and Jews of many extractions, many recently arrived Ethiopians and some old Russians, and the level of social coherence and cooperation is very low while drugs and criminality are rampant. Life in these mixed towns is unpleasant. After smelling the putrid stink of the chicken butchery and its front sewage lake, I took a wow of never eating shwarma in Lod.