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June 2012

With the arrival of the rainy season, the banda (boatyard) was tested hard by the rain and the wind, but it held up well.

The work stopped for some time and the relationship between the Musafirs and fundi (builders) began to deteriorate. The causes were cultural differences. One cause was greediness perceived by the Musafirs. Much of that was caused by the misconception that foreigners were an endless supply of money and resources.

Another issue was around the material supply: the wood chosen by the fundi often proved unsuitable for use. 

After trying many times to improve the relationship, the Musafirs decided to appoint a new crew to complete the work.

Finding people who say they are able to build a 70-foot dhow is easy. But the hard part is finding the people who can actually do it: the knowledge is no longer so common.

In a remote village of Pate Island, an old builder and his sons seemed to have the right credentials and they decided to take over as the new fundis.