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Haiti 2010, Day 3

June 7, 2010

Monday May 24, 2010.  

May We are up at 4:30, finish packing for the trip to Baie d’Orange. After breakfast we finish loading the truck with our luggage. There are three vehicles, the large stake truck with some wooden bench seats for us to set on and all of the equipment and luggage. We also have a 4 wheel drive small pickup with a generator and fuel because there is no electricity in the village. The third vehicle belongs to the district Superintendent for the Nazarene Church in Haiti who will accompany us there and stay for the first day to help us get started.  

On the way out of Port A Prince we see many tent cities and go by the Presidential Palace which was destroyed by the earthquake.  

Presidential Palace

It seems the hundreds of thousands of people are homeless with very little hope that this will change in the near future. Yet the people we met all were in good spirits and working hard to improve their situation. We were told that one out of every four people were effected by the earthquake either by loss of a friend, relative, loss or damage to their home or business. We need to be sure we do not forget Haiti and think just because we do not hear about it in the news that every thing is OK. They will continue to need our help for years to come.  

More Tent Cities

It took us  two to three hours to get out of the city due to bad roads and a lot of traffic. This is the first time I have seen potholes larger around than a car. We then went west along the coast were we saw sugarcane fields and banana plantations.  

Sugar Cain Field

We then turned south over the mountains to the town of Jacmel on the south coast of the island. We saw both United Nations crews and local Haitian crews working on the road. It appeared there had been many landslides with covered part of the road and they were digging them out and also repairing areas where the edge of the road had disappeared down the mountain.  

We stopped at a small village in the middle of the island where the Sanctuary Mississauga had funded a well for fresh water a year ago. The Church/School had been badly damaged by the earthquake and most of it had to be torn down and they were in the process of replacing it. The walls were up and they were awaiting trusses for the roof.  

Church/School being repaired

We found the children meeting for school in a UNICEF tent until the building could be finished. We also had the children come out and show us the well that was funded by the Sanctuary Mississauga Southern Baptist Church.  

School Children at the Well

Then we were off to Jacmel. When we arrived at Jacmel it was now afternoon so we stopped at a little place like a park on the south coast of the island for lunch. There was a beautiful beach, palm trees which show how at one time this was a resort area.  

Beautiful Beaches

It had taken us about six hours to get here and now the difficult part to the journey started. We turned up a windy mountain road that was one lane most of the way. It had many rocks, ruts and other hazards like two river crossings, no bridges.  

The Second River Crossing

Then up the mountain with many switchbacks and turns. The road was so rough that we all had to hold on just to stay on the seat. Then we had the first of three flat tires due to the rough road.  

The First Flat Tire

Then it was off again. When we got close to the village of Baie d’Orange, but the road was very slippery due to the rain (It rained every day). As we were climbing the last hill to the village the truck started to spin and we were unable to get up the hill. Soon the villagers started to appear and they quickly unloaded the truck and carried all of out luggage the rest of the way to the village. With there help pushing we got the truck up the hill.  

The Villagers Helping to Unload the Truck

After arriving in the village we were allowed to use the Church for sleeping while we were there. Due to space issues some of us slept in the vehicles. By this time it was evening. We had a kitchen set up in the back of the stake truck where some of the women fixed supper. This journey which was probably less than one hundred miles took us 10 hours. We all had sore backsides from the bumpy ride up the mountain and were happy to turn in for the night. As the Church had a dirt floor we brought tarps and air mattresses for sleeping.  

The Church made of Bamboo sticks, tarps and Palm Leaves

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