It’s hard to write about experiences so new and abstract. Being able to interpret an experience in a different world and encountering people, objects, ideals so foreign and new is difficult. I’m not going to lie. But the truth behind our purpose and approach to this trip begins to take shape and finally crystallize into an object worth saving and remembering for “at least” a lifetime. I honestly do not know how to explain what happened today, but I can say “expect the unexpected.” We as a group can’t immerse ourselves into worlds where people (children/adults) and places seem so laid out. Meaning things seem to go the way we want them to go. Smiling. Fun. Doing something that helps develop something far greater than ourselves. But the truth is, we can’t have everything and not every individual event will go the way we want it to go. From what happened today, my views and perspectives weren’t necessarily changed but i can say it was a reality check.
We started our day at SOPUDEP for the third day in a row. Even though we were supposed to only go for one day, we knew after the first time we had to do these intense aerobics, jazzercise, core exercises, and a little bit of Zumba (never thought I would say I did Zumba) again. So I guess this is our little addiction in Haiti. I mean who can resist the smiles. The experience at SOPUDEP is so different from Ashley and Ms. K learning dances to Amy and Sky getting the hang of Haitian games but the best part about it is everyone enjoys the the work and experience being done there. But not only did this experience stay at SOPUDEP but continued to the second part of the day at Sakala. It was inspiring to us to see the work the children do at Cita Solei with the largest urban garden in Haiti but also the love and passion for their game of futbol. Each one of us encountered this either with Lauren, Amy, Ashley making baskets in a friendly game of basketball or Nathan, Sky, and Joshua struggling to keep up with the fast passing Sakala team. The day was enjoyed because of these simple pleasures and our compassion and dedication to what we’re here to do.
What happens today doesn’t really matter. The fact of the matter is we were able to question what happened and the real purpose of this trip. We did hit a couple of bumps and some roadblocks but we became closer together. The ability to talk about things we can’t talk about everyday is like finding a needle in a haystack. Relief and happiness strikes because the reasons we were brought together were cherished and unique in its own way. This is why I believe it took time for this trip to transform into what it is now and continue to change despite all the differences, conflicts, joys, laughs, and events that unfold. But in the end, I can see all of us holding this crystal forever.
See you on the other side.
- Nathan Bao
Honestly, I can’t describe what happened. It seriously made me question the whole purpose of our trip. Is our mission to work in solidarity really gonna make a difference? What will happen after we leave? It was worrisome to discover how these questions came up because I was completely shocked and fell out of my mind set after the day’s event. For a bit, I was drawing a blank and at points I didn’t know what to say or do. I arrived in Haiti thinking I was prepared for everything Haiti has to offer; good and bad. Although this was the case I completely regret that decision of seeming to be prepared.
It is about 10:00 A.M in the morning over here in Haiti. In my opinion, the early morning is the most beautiful part of the day. Spending time at SOPUDEP in the morning has been very fun for me personally. At the school yesterday , my new friend Danielle and I attempted to freestyle on the microphone with great amounts of energy. Eventually the rest of the crew took a turn too. It was wonderful to see such enthusiasm from our small group, even if it wasn’t their cup of tea. The laughter and memories we are sharing will never be forgotten.
Hi all I am super excited to be traveling with you and to work shoulder to shoulder with 6 incredible EVHS students and the Haitian community!