Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Haiti on the Hodgepodge

Since I have recently returned from a week-long trip to Haiti, and since I still have a few (hundred) photos to share from our trip, I'm making today's Wednesday Hodgepodge a 'Haiti Edition.' Thanks to Joyce, for asking the questions, and for allowing me to put my own 'twist' on the answers today. Enjoy my answers, then click on the button to visit Joyce and the others.

Here are Joyce's questions and my 'Haiti themed' answers:

1. What's something you take for granted, that when you stop and think about it you feel truly grateful for?

Oh, I don't know….a hot shower? electricity? Nothing like a trip to Haiti to remind you to be grateful. So grateful.

On my last trip to Haiti, in 2012, we stayed in this building.
This time, we stayed here, in an old building which has been newly renovated. Screens in the windows, flush toilets, cold showers, and electricity all night.
Happy and grateful.

2. The color brown-love it or no? What's your favorite shade of brown? Most loved something in your home or closet in a shade of brown?

I love these beautiful faces!
As for a favorite 'something brown' in my house, I love this bowl that I purchased in Haiti several years ago. It's lovely, for sure, but can't compare to those sweet faces!

3. What's something you're looking forward to today?

Tonight, I will get to direct choir practice with these sweet children. A few weeks ago they made shirts for me to take with me to the kids at the orphanage in Haiti.
And they loved them!!

4. The word 'feminism' is not new, but it has been generating all kinds of headlines in recent days and months. What do you think/feel when you hear the word? If you're a woman, do you want to be described as a feminist? Why or why not?

I'm guessing there isn't a word in Kreyol that means 'feminism,' but I do know the women in Haiti spend their days working. Hard. To feed their families. Do the laundry. Carry the water. Clean their homes.
Which takes me back to question #1 about taking things for granted. And being grateful.
Paulette lives on the side of a mountain with many children. Her husband is a farmer. She does her laundry in a trickle of a river down in the valley. That's her kitchen in the background.
Another woman in her kitchen.
Bath time.
This is our friend Jesula making a Hatian pate (pot-ay) for her American guests.
With the hands of a strong, tender, loving woman. Who knows nothing about feminism. Amen.

5. What's something you personally can't eat without making a mess?

These are the pates, made by Jesula (above), and served to us at the party she hosted at her home while we were visiting. The pate (pronounced pot-ay) is a filled fried pastry similar to a calzone. They are served with pikliz (picklese) on top, which is a spicy cole slaw served as a condiment. So good! And also messy when you're eating it out of a bag. :)
Here is the pate,
and the pikliz being added before they were passed out to the guests.
Speaking of food, this is one of the traditional Haitian meals we enjoyed during our visit. We ate well every day, and were grateful for the food, and for those who prepared it. On this day, the meal included (from the bottom going clockwise): goat, red beans and rice with spicy sauce, fried plantains with pikliz on top, and fresh avocado. Yum!
Of course, because of the goat, I have to share our goat joke (which I may have probably already shared, but bear with me). When Jonathan and Jennifer went to Haiti in the fall of 2010, they were served goat for lunch. Jon ate it and liked it. When dinnertime came, and didn't include meat, Jonathan's comment was, "shoulda had more goat." That phrase was later used in a sermon by our then-pastor, Jimmy, who was with them on that trip. It's become a funny (probably only to us) family phrase.

6. When did you last surprise someone with a little gift or when were you last surprised by someone with a little gift? What was it?

Sister Claudette is one of the Sisters who lives and works in the community of Fondwa. I try to take a little something for my friends there, like soaps and lotion, and I shared some with Sister Claudette.
I also took a few things for our friend Jesula. New dish towels, lotion, a mirror, and some gifts for her children.

7. Share a favorite quote, saying, song lyric or scripture relating to gratitude.

This is the blessing we sing before each meal, in Kreyol.
It means: This food you send to us Father, it is the food of life.
Thanks be to God. Amen.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

Hopefully, this video will load, and you will be able to view it.
This is a little girl who lives at the orphanage. She wasn't at all shy about singing for us.
Maybe in a few years we can bring her to The Voice!

Have a great day!


Jhona Oberholtzer said...

OH, I loved listening to her beautiful voice and seeing her smile! Your post really helps put things into perspective and I appreciate all of the photos. You are a blessing!

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed your photos and your 'Haitian Twist' to the questions today :)
You really made me count my blessings.

Joyce said...

What a wonderful post! My favorite HP ever! I enjoyed this peek into the culture and countryside. Made me think of that old song, 'Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world...' A heaping helping of perspective here today dosed out gently : )

Cathy said...

What a cute video! So sweet.

Seeing what they have and that they are so willing to share, reminds me to be thankful for all I have.

Terri D said...

A great Hodgepodge, and your answers are blessings.

Tori Leslie said...

What an incredible opportunity. I love your photos and those faces are unforgettable. It's wonderful that you took time to be a blessing. Missions has a special place in my heart. BTw, love the blog and I followed, I'll be back!