Today provided a final opportunity to finish some tasks around the mission compound. While some of the guys stayed back to work hard throughout the morning, the rest of us toured a produce market all morning. Sights of fresh raw fish covered in flies, charcoal piles as far as the eye could see, fatigued Haitians laying next to the belongings they hoped to sell in order to feed their families: all reminders of how easy life is back home, and how easy it is to take small conveniences like grocery shopping for granted.
The afternoon was somewhat relaxing, with odd jobs being tackled here and there. Many of us took the opportunity to step outside the walls of the compound and visit more with children we were growing fond of, and developing relationships with this week. These little ones have made lasting impressions on us. The language of love speaks loud and clear.
Partially because I want you to use your imagination, partially because we weren’t able to get cameras out in some of our excursions today, and partially because we’ve tested the limits of our internet connection, I’ll leave you with a sensory filled journal entry from Pam Heims. Any photos we can include, we’ll do at a later time. Enjoy.
God, you have given me so many gifts. I am experiencing Haiti through all my senses…
The sense of smell – The first smell I noticed when I arrived at La Digue, the village where Lifeline is located, is that the whole countryside smelled like a campfire. The familiar childhood smell of a camping weekend. But the Haitians aren’t camping – this is their life. They cook their once a day meals of rice and beans over an outside charcoal fire. Our trip to the City of Soliel, the slums of Port-Au-Prince, brought a new smell, a pungent stench of trash and humanity.
The sense of sound – A crowing rooster each morning around 3:00am (Good Morning!). Barking dogs. Bleating goats.
The sense of touch – Little black hands feeling my neck, playing with my hair, placing their hands into mine, hugging me lightly around my neck as I carry them through the village.
The sense of taste – Rice, beans, and plastic as I bite off a corner of a bag of drinking water.
The sense of sight – Crumbling cement block houses, rocky rutted roads, privacy fences topped with barbed wire and broken glass, proud Haitian women carrying bundles on top of their heads, smiling black faces with perfect white teeth, little girls with hair graded, beaded and ribboned.
What do I see? Possibilities.