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Our first five days have been eventful. We arrived into Guatemala City on Wednesday night and hit the ground running. After dropping our gear off at Joel’s house, we went to a local McDonald’s for a production meeting to review plans for the week. We went to bed about 2:30AM.
Layover in DallasIMG_0616
Thursday morning came early. Our alarm was set for 5:30 AM so we could be ready for a 6:15 pickup to take us across the city to an organization called “The Potter’s House”. We spent a couple hours getting to know Edgar and Gladys and then drove out to a neighborhood next to the Guatemala City dump to begin filming. We worked with a scavenger (a person who digs through the trash at the dump in search of things of value) and a “Doll Lady” (a person who takes discarded doll parts, cleans them up, and sews them back together to make new dolls). The Scavenger and “Doll Lady” were so kind and happy to help us. We ate lunch at the Potters house and then spent the rest of the afternoon shooting at the “Doll Lady’s” house. We returned back to Joel’s around 7PM and spent some time with a crew of Guatemlan’s who are helping us (Hubert, Diego, Pablo, Esteban, and Jonathan). It was a blessing to hear their heart for Guatemala. After the guys left, we archived our footage and were in bed by 3AM.
Bobby eating breakfastWorking at the "Doll Lady's" house.
Friday was another early morning – 5:45 wake up and 6:30 Pickup to travel to the Potter’s House. We spent the morning at the “Doll Lady’s” house filming more of the process with the dolls. Then we walked through the community shooting footage of other micro-economy enterprises. After lunch we spent the rest of the afternoon shooting interviews with people from the Potter’s House about their work in the community around the dump. After dinner we watched a couple videos about the Guatemalan Civil War and the dump to give us more information and context for our project. We finished up some file backups and went to bed about midnight.
Interviewing Gladys - the founder of the Potter's HouseIMG_0656
Saturday we hired a security team to take us to a market to shoot the final scene with the “Doll Lady”. The market was chaotic with vendors and people everywhere – we were thankful we had the extra security. We hired a mother and daughter to be a part of our scene and they worked wonderfully. After the market scene we traveled across the city to shoot some wider shots in a dump at Villanueva because we are not allowed in the main dump in Guatemala City. However, when we arrived at the dump, we were told that their was an “armed conflict” going on in the dump and it wouldn’t be safe, so we drove back to Joel’s and interviewed one of the Gang Pastors about his work in the prison. After diner Scott was feeling pretty bad and went to bed at 8:30PM to try to get some rest. The rest of the team was in be by 11:30.
Sunday Scott woke up at 10:30AM ate breakfast, went back to bed and slept all day. Bengy and Bobby went around the city with Diego to get various shots. After Bengy and Bobby returned form their shoot the team decided to take Scott to the Emergency Room because we were concerned that he might have the Swine Flu. We were seen immediately and Scott was given an IV to help bring down his 102 fever. The doctor took some blood to test for Swine Flu and took a chest X-Ray. We all tried to stay positive in spite of the situation. After about 45 minutes the doctor returned to give us the unfortunate news. Scott’s blood work came back positive for “Influenza A” – a strain which could be the H1N1 Swine Flu. The doctor prescribed Tamiflu and suggested that Scott be quarantined for five days to prevent the rest of the team from getting ill. There are 24 hour pharmacies all over Guatemala City but only a few keep Tamiflu in stock, so Joel drove to a few until he found some. Scott took the first dose and went to bed. Bobby and Bengy and J.Mac worked on a video podcast episode and went to bed at 2:30AM.
We are hoping that Scott will be feeling better and will be able to jump back into production asap.

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