March 14th, 2017
Tuesday in Haiti.
We had a packed house of prenatal appointments, anemia checks and two first time mamas in labor. It was busy. We have several midwives and students here from Haiti and abroad and all hands were busy. It was a beautiful thing to see.
I on the other hand was busy with other things and thoughts. I did my laundry by hand again today. Carmi the cook helped me. Everyone helps each other here. It’s a sweet thing. It’s like a big family. Then I helped Monise wash the windows. We worked hard to get them nice a clean with Windex and newspaper.
Then I decided I needed to clean the lot next door and all the gutters up of trash which is a week long project for sure.
I started by taking a picture of all the trash. A man walked by and said why to you all want to take pictures of my Haiti like that. I showed him my bags and explained we have many volunteers here. I am going to clean this up. He told me he was sorry, thanked me for loving his Haiti and shook my hand. I filled four trash bags today full of a variety of trash, cans, bottles, bags of poo, etc… I also made sure to step in a giant pile of cow poo. I was really working. I figure I’ll fill 8 more bags tomorrow and maybe 8 the next day. Maybe the landowners will let us use the space for a garden we clean it up.
Darren was busy on the roof working on the batteries that connect to the solar panels. He and Claudin talked to the solar guys last night trying to figure out how to fix the charge issues we are having. It’s a big ordeal. Hopefully we get this all figured out.
Then Emily, Darren, Claudin and I went into town for the day. I had this idea that we needed bath mats. So bath mats aren’t a thing in Haiti. So it took us a while. Ultimately I found two that will work. They are used. They need to be washed and they cost me more than I imagined they would but I got them. You see the tiles are so slick here. I decided bath mats would save a life. All in all it was a pretty amusing and exhausting adventure. I even bargained a bit, with Claudin’s help.
We weren’t only in town for bath mats. We also went to the mechanic where our land cruiser is stored. Darren will spend the day there tomorrow helping to fix that vehicle and hopefully get it back home.
Our ambulance is in the port. It was filled with boxes. We couldn’t get the ambulance but we did get all of the boxes and brought them home in our tap tap. So many donations!!! Thank you!!!
We went for lunch at Le Kay. It’s a funny restaurant on the beach here. They serve burgers and Emily was able to get a vegetarian plate. This place was filled with well dressed Haitians and Internationals. It’s a trippy little place. Apparently we are trying to have all the experiences here.
After lunch we ran to the pharmacy. I could hear beautiful singing and I had to jump out of the car and follow the music. Down the road and around the corner I found a church with the most beautiful echoing song coming from its open doors. I stood in the doors eyes closed just feeling it. It was good for my heart today.
As I was waking away for the church I then heard familiar horn sounds what I’ve come to know as a Haitian funeral procession. The horns were followed by hundreds of uniformed children and scholarly dressed adults following behind. Clearly, someone special died. It was something to see.
We made it home to hear two baby boys were born without complication.
We emptied the tap-tap of donations. We carried them up two flights of stairs. We all got sweaty. So much stuff.
I ended my evening by doing interviews with two more of our midwives. I’m interviewing our staff while I’m here in Haiti. I’m learning so much about them all as well as hearing what works here and ways they feel we can make improvements.
My time left here feels so short. I will miss everyone here once I leave. At this moment as I type this we are all out on the patio. Emily and Aloudes son are playing dominos and Carmelle is getting her hair braids done by a friend. Darren is reading a book. It’s a nice night. I am feeling so blessed to have all these amazing humans in my life. The mosquitoes are a little bitey tonight. I may have to get some bug spray soon. Malaria is still a thing.
There is someone outside singing on and off tonight too.
Haiti you have my heart.
I may have also said “Oh my gosh, this is just like Pirates of the Caribbean” today. That’s a product of growing up in Southern California. I can make all sorts of Disneyland references to life. It took me a few minutes to realized omg I’m in the Caribbean. Wow!!!! My life in a nutshell.