picture of bricklayers working on an oven

A few hundred metres away, a big company that supplies most of the big cities with the bricks is off season. Perhaps because of the rain. The compound where its workers stay and earn their living is just stone throw away.

Here are the pits, huge chasms etched into the ground. One can be mistaken they are in the arid plains of the Sahara. In the depths of the pit, the bricklayers toil, hauling loads of red earth into wheel barrows, which are pushed along ramps to a point not far away. A few metres away, a woman uses red earth to plaster walls of an oven which is bellowing blue smoke, where the bricks are being burnt using coal.

 picture of digging rod

This, they say is their livelihood and what they only know; making bricks that will be sold to a section of the community who cannot afford the high prices the big company nearby charges.

“Ndizvo zvatakapihwawo izvi mukoma naMwari (translated “this is the profession that has been ordained to me by God)”, one of the man says to me, as he throws more coal onto the simmering heap. I nod my head and look across the pits to the compound where little children can be seen playing in a narrow road…
Picture of an Ovenbricklayers work in the pitsPicture of the brickwork pitsbricklayers work in the pitsA broken Shovel at the Brick Work SitePicture of the brickwork pits

 

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