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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Saturday Night Fever

Well, it is Saturday night, and I'm hot, so I guess that counts.

I forgot to mention, on the way down here, we passed a group of people (more of a friendly swarm) and discovered that President Michel Martelly was speaking with citizens.  Not a big deal, but kinda interesting.  Wasn't surrounded with secret service or anything like we would have.  I'm sure there were body guards, though.

Also Bill Clinton is somewhere near by, but he hasn't called on us.  We just saw where the Clinton-Bush Foundation released a bunch of aid money.  Yea.

This morning after a breakfast of toast, strong Haitian coffee and omelets, we unloaded our duffel bags and started a production line making packets for the many prisoners in the Les Cayes prison.  Conditions there are terrible.  There are currently under 600 men, and about 30 women.  For the men, we have boxers, tees, soap and a washcloth.  For the women, we have panties, sports bras, soap and a washcloth.  We will be going to visit the prison on Monday.

Mid-morning, we took a van into Les Cayes, and went to a huge open market "farmers" market.  This isn't the usual Les Cayes market, but beyond the city.  The parking lot was really a donkey lot, with the longest stretch of tied up donkeys I've ever seen.  You could buy anything here, including  sugar cane (which we did), hand woven straw hats (that I didn't but now wish I had), hoofs,sausage, rice, corn, clothing, used shoes, sundries, whole live hogs, and they even had hot dog carts, Laura.  However, they didn't look too sanitary, so we didn't partake. I really was intrigued by the butchered animals.   I'm sure they were delicious after sitting in the hot Haitian sun for a few hours!

The beautiful little girl in the hat (with lower arm amputated) and her brother followed us around the market the whole time.  I gave her some money after we took her picture.
Back for lunch, which was a delicious rice dish (see facebook photo).  Then I took copies of photos I'd taken on my last trip and went to see the Espwa cooks.  They make over 2000 meals per day, and seem to have a great time!   They loved the pictures, and laughed at each other and showed them around.  Made it worthwhile.  They may let me come "help" them cook again later, perhaps.

I took a real nap today, slept and everything, and awoke refreshed. Then two groups of little boys came in the guesthouse and colored pictures.  The first group was about 7 years old, the second probably 9 or 10.  There are some really good artists.   

Dinner time, and we had wonderful home made pizza.  And, we had a surprise cake for pastor Lori, since this is her last day as a Schweitzer employee.  As of tomorrow, she works for Espwa.  So, we had a nun on top, with "Congratulations, Sister Mary Lori", since Espwa is run by a catholic organization.  I don't think she'll convert, but just wanted to cover our bridges.  Also gave her a ruler, as that's my understanding how nuns kept discipline in the good ol' days. Please note the writing was done by our Haitian cook.  Pretty good!

Tomorrow is going to be a fun day, full report then.  Au revoir!

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