Saturday, July 4, 2009

Fourth of July a world away

Saturday, The Fourth of July! 11:00 AM
Happy Fourth of July! By my count, I know of about 6 or 7 Americans on campus so there is unlikely to be much going on here. There are probably others--I see ‘blans’ here and there but not sure they are all American. There is a large very supportive Swiss contingent here.

So I am continuing to deal with the HEAT. I didn't know it was possible to sweat this much. Usually I don't feel much older than I did in 2000, the year I first came here, 0r 2002 when I was here in August. But I do feel that much older in Haiti!!! When your body is pushed to the max, you do notice the decreasing ability to adjust to conditions that comes with age.

This morning I did a short round of light mental stimulation--LONG division. Not exactly rocket science, but something that calculators have made virtually obsolete beyond grade school. I graded the student exams from Friday and had to figure the percentage out of 43 points. I thought about waiting for Duane to come back in with his i-Phone which I think has a calculator ap, but decided that was silly. So I can still do it. Not sure, though, if I had to do something like a square root . . . .

Duane Dowell is on the wards now admitting 2 children and tending to the wrap up for a small child who died this morning. I wrote up many e-mails in Kay 12 (House 12), then came down here to the cool of the library to gain internet access to send.

Kreyol lessons have finally been arranged and start on Monday in the classroom where Vera Dowell once taught. (The school is, I assume, closed for the summer.) I NEED them, but is is amazing how much immersion in a language helps. I am remembering many common phrases; enough, I think, to at least be polite and greet people.

I am being followed on the grounds by a man who looks somewhere between desperate and crazy (Parkland is actually good training for this). First he asked my name, then he wanted to be my friend. I brushed him off. Next time he was more direct: he asked for money for beans and rice. He told me that he was hungry. There are no easy answers .. . .

I enjoyed a wonderful dinner last night of beans and rice and squash casserole. Ironically in this country of hunger, i am never worried about having food. This is, I suspect, the arrogance of being an American and perhaps a clue to why so many people in the world wish us harm. It is very hard to wrap my head around this. There are no easy answers . . .

I will try to live the questions.

Please let me hear from you. Use my earthlink address:
Please pass that email address and my blog address on to anyone who is interested in my ramblings.
Thanks for your support, Judy

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