Troubled Waters Synopsis
Jim has lived in South America off and on over the last 20 years, but there is one region he has never explored; Northwest Argentina. On a whim he decides to take a tourist train in the Northwestern Andes Mountains of Argentina that is billed as “The Train to the Clouds.”
As the colorful train snakes around ominous mountain peaks it rounds a bend at 12,000 feet above sea level. Jim sees a dusty town in the distance. The train stops. Jim steps out and looks over the city as children run by and craftswomen are selling ornate and colorful clothes. There’s something about this remote town that stirs him. He steps back on the train and leaves knowing he will be back. The next day Jim discovers San Antonio de Los Cobres has a well-known secret; the people are being poisoned by their drinking water.
After sleepless nights wrestling with vivid images of children running down the adobe streets of San Antonio de Los Cobres, a crisis of faith pushes Jim to answer the quest to help his global neighbor. Jim decides to do something more compassionately audacious than he’s ever done; provide clean water for the entire town of 6000 people.
One sleepless night turns into many as Jim struggles through the increasingly complicated task of providing a water filtration system for San Antonio de Los Cobres. His journey through the steep Andes Mountains, helping people he comes to know personally, takes him through a six-year odyssey that becomes more complex, humorous, and maddening than he ever imagined. The geographical barriers pale in comparison only to the cultural and governmental hurtles he must face. Will Jim get his water filtration system over the bend to San Antonio de Los Cobres and find meaning through fulfilling this epic call to help his neighbor, or will his quest end in failure, costing the lives of thousands?