Sunday, December 2, 2007

Haiti bound

The countdown for our trip to Haiti is drawing near and as usual I'm getting stressed out about whether or not I have remembered everything. I mean I've only done this about 4 times before so you would think I would have it down pat by now. Remember my previous post about getting old....well this is part of what happens to you when that occurs. I know I have all my shots, my passport is in order, the tickets are bought, I have arranged for transportation to the airport.....what am I forgetting?? I never can remember what carry on bag I used on my last trip and if it seemed large enough for everything I needed. If this seems like a minor matter to any of you I would challenge you to plan a 8 day trip and then pack everything you need in a carry on bag. You see the checked baggage that we are allowed is taken up with the items that we take to Haiti for the people there and to support the whole mission effort. For instance my checked baggage consists of 75 pounds of school supplies and the rest is Christmas gifts for the Haitian kids who live on the beach near the compound where we stay. Another thing to consider is that there ain't no 7-11's in Haiti so if you want a pack of square nabs every morning at 10am you better take them with you. My motto goes back to my boy scout days and I'm into "be prepared". So I usually take more than I need just in case. That don't work on this trip. We get one opportunity to wash our clothes on this trip so that means you don't need clean drawers for everyday ...just enough for 4 days. I might be forced to consider thongs just to take up less space. We are not sure exactly what project we will be working on once we get to Haiti but in the past we have been involved in planting trees on the mountainside, building small fishponds, building water cisterns and working on additions to the school buildings. Whatever we do we can surely depend on it being very hot, the mountainsides will be just as steep, some 80 year Haitian grandmother will work your sorry American ass in the dirt .....but in the long run you will feel so good about what you have done that you will leave to come home already thinking about your trip next year. If your church is not into mission work you don't know what you are missing. Don't convince yourself that just because lots of Americans have their hand out with no gratitude in their heart, that it's that way everywhere. There are needy people in this world that will work alongside you everyday and appreciate what you are doing for them....get out there and find them. You'll feel better for your effort......Crookedpaw