On a Saturday morning in Otoxha, over two dozen men are building a house in the diffused yellow light of a misty tropical morning. They’ve been at it since daybreak, and their work is nearly silent.
The materials are modest: a pile of freshly cut cahune palm for the roof, a stack of long rails harvested from jungle trees, and rough-hewn boards of emory wood ready to become walls.
There are no saws, hammers or nails. Instead, a pile of dark machetes under the overhang, abandoned out of the rain, and a community of men balancing on the beams and rafters of the house in progress, lashing materials into shape.