Finally made it to Haiti but not before a long day crossing from the Dominican Republic. My day started the day before really as I hardly slept last night; a combination of over tiredness, excitement and nervousness made it impossible to rest. Breakfast at 6:00 am, a taxi ride to the bus station, and a three hour wait for our 11:00 am departure.
The trip was uneventfull, though it was awesome to be in the company of Haitians again after 13 years. The air was filled with French, English and Creole all mixing together expressing the good nature of my fellow countrymen. A short stop at the border allowed me to enjoy the typical vibrancy of a Haitian market with the merchants trying to sell me all sorts of things that I did not need nor wanted.
After the border crossing it was about one hour when I started to see signs of the earthquake. A few houses here and there with walls down or completely flattened, tents in front gardens as many people are still afraid to go back into their homes. Coming closer to town the picture got worse with more buildings down and pockets of tent cities, they look worse in reality than in the pictures.
My heart leaped when I saw my dad waiting for me at the station, after a long hug and kisses, we were in the car and the picture unfolding before me was not getting any better. According to my family, I have not seen anything yet, tomorrow will be the heartbreak. On our way though I passed what was the grocery store my parents used. It is completely destroyed and there are still bodies under the rubble.
Mum was as beautiful as ever and again just as with dad, we hugged for a long time and I did not want to let go of her. Without any delay the stories started to be told. The schools are still not functioning as so many of the buildings are not safe. Aid and ressources are in the country but co-ordination is still a nightmare. There is still a void of leadership from the government, it feels like that there is no government and consequently the different aid agencies are doing their own thing without anyone to unify them. The country is over run by experts many of whom are yet to put their expertise to good use.
Oh, a lot is being done, but there is so much more to do and the people are frustrated. I'll have to go out tomorrow and assess all this for myself. I really don't recognise the place!