Our latest adventures in Haiti

Day 3 – A New Day Dawns

As anticipated last night, by the wonderful smells of dinner, the food was just as delicious. We were treated to a delicious macaroni casserole, tasty chicken and dirty rice with creole sauce…yum!! We continue to be spoiled by our host, Léon, and last night he was even our chef! He is truly a master of many skills.

After dinner, we enjoyed  our own version of “The Wild Kingdom”…gecko vs cricket…in case you are wondering, the cricket lived to chirp another day. Shortly thereafter, and after another refreshing cold shower, most of us retired for the evening. Thankfully the fans ran all night, because the air was very very still. Due to another very busy day, sleep came quickly and only around 4 AM was I awakened by our resident cricket. You see a theme here…apparently the crickets have an internal clock…and we need more geckos (sorry Melila). After 6 years, I may need to change my ringtone from a rooster to a cricket chirp…sorry Mylinda!! Read More

Day 2 – A Day for Exploring

As expected last night, after a return to the cold shower experience and once the lights went out…so did we. We were treated to generator power all night running a fan, which meant I didn’t hear any wildlife except for a lone cricket who apparently took up residence in our bathroom. In fact, I didn’t even stir until after 4 AM. Seriously, no dogs barking, no donkeys braying, no sheep baah-ing  (not sure if that’s actually a word), no bears and believe it or not, I did not hear the first rooster until after 6 o’clock! The chickens must be much smarter on this island paradise…but no less tasty!

Breakfast was served around eight, and we figured we all must have slept nearly ten or more hours; an unusual, but much needed treat. Of course, that was just the first of many. After breakfast, we explored the surrounding area. We saw the orphanage that houses 11 boys from age three to eighteen. We then walked the road to see additional properties owned by Léon, and Grace Ministries of Ile a Vache.  Of course, this was the source of much excitement for us. We walked three different properties and the 3rd was the crown jewel – expansive, gentle slope, open to cooling breezes, direct line of sight to a cell tower (and the excellent connectivity that comes with that), and also some of the best views of the ocean on the island! We are thinking this may be the ideal site for a future medical center to serve a population in great need. Read More

Day 1 – “Back on the Road Again”…and in the Air…and on the Water!

Our apologies for the tardy post…reliable internet connections are sometimes hard to come by!

As I mentioned in the previous post, this is a unique adventure for our team, in many ways. The first of which is just our many modes of transportation, though the duration of our first day travels rivals that of some of our previous journeys. That said, we have endured the overnight in the Ft. Lauderdale airport…and I do mean endured! We made it through Port au Prince customs and baggage check with the benefit of Melila’s Kreyol and the gentleman who found us with a sign which simply read “Adam Sarbin” (never been so happy to see my name in print); he helped us locate our new friend Gary who was our driver for the day and we proceeded to make the five-hour long road trip to the south and west to Les Cayes – a first for our group (we had an air-conditioned van and NO dry riverbed roads…how refreshing!). This is where we met Nora and her husband Léon for the first time, before heading to the pier to board a boat for our next leg; we boarded our boat (another exciting first) and made the one hour ride to our ultimate destination – the former haunt of infamous pirate Captain Morgan! Read More

Team 2016 – Ready for Action

My regrets for the long hiatus between posts.  Rest assured, we have been working hard towards our goal and are now ready to report on our progress.  This coming March, we will be taking a new journey and exploring previously uncharted territory for our group.  In fact we will be going by land, air and sea and will be expanding our network yet again.  From our last trip’s blog entries, it should come as no surprise that the purpose of our upcoming journey is to perform the necessary fact-finding duties and due diligence as we seek to establish a more permanent and sustainable medical presence where it is needed most.

To that end, our good friend Vanessa Carpenter at Angel Missions Haiti helped connect us with Mrs. Nora Leon with the Caribbean Children’s Foundation, and for that we are very thankful. Nora’s organization operates a mission on the small island of Ile a Vache, which is located off the southwest coast of mainland Haiti and the city of Les Cayes. Interestingly, it was once a haven for pirates in the 1600’s, including the infamous Captain Henry Morgan.  As you can imagine, being such a small island off the mainland, the degree of poverty and lack of access to services is even greater.  Read More

Day 8 – Au Revoi Ayiti…We Will Be Back

(Disclaimer – sorry for the delayed post. My phone died while traveling and I did not have long enough anywhere to recharge adequately. And once home I was way too tired to stay up to finish, but here it is now…mea culpa.)

Last night (Saturday actually) I got to speak with all my girls and cannot wait to see them. After wishing them all a good night, I rejoined the group for a rowdy game of Tourettes. I imagine, for a change, the Haitian people in the hills of Port au Prince were wondering, “what is THAT noise?”…it was the sound of a bunch of Americans laughing hysterically on a rooftop in Haiti…music to my ears!

Once the game was over we descended to our rooms exhausted, I think physically, emotionally and mentally as is common at this stage of our trips. Sleep came quickly for me, but as is the case in this crowded city, the constant barking of dogs and crowing of roosters quickly roused and disturbed slumber through the night. I have come to realize I need to stay in one place long enough to acclimate to the native sounds of the night before I am able to sleep soundly through. Maybe next trip?? Read More