Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Election Time is Comin


I just wanted to let all of you know that I am safe. Much violence broke out across Haiti yesterday with the results of Haiti's presidential election. There will be a run-off in January between two folks: Mirlande Manigat and Jude Celestin.

The people are happy about Manigat, but quite angry about Celestin. Supporters of a man named Michel Martelly are particularly upset, saying that the election was rigged and it should have been Manigat and Martelly in the run-off. Martelly supporters have blocked roads and gathered in groups to shout protests and march through the cities.

We are staying inside the Guest House and staying tuned to news reports. We are also in contact with our friends (interpreters, cooks, drivers, etc.) who are away from the Guest House and might have a better assessment of what's going on in the streets. Everyone we know is also okay and staying inside today.

If there are any further updates, I will let you know. Needless to say, this is definitely going to be a story I'm going to be able to tell for the rest of my life!

Praying for peace,

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Foosball: A Photo Story

Today we went to the Ibo Lele hotel for a little R&R and for Barry's "last hurrah" before he heads home next week on Sunday. I've been to Ibo Lele several times and I always have a great time. During these visits, we've discovered that Sunday afternoons are the best time to visit Ibo because they have a bar area open with American football on the TV, two pool tables, a foosball table, and (of course) alcohol.

The visit today was quite nice - good food, good company, and cooler (73 degree) weather.

However, after lunch is when the real fun began. Oge and I went downstairs to the bar area and played foosball.

Oge has never played foosball so it was fun teaching him how to play. It was an instant hit, though, and soon the competition was on!

I won the first four games. :) Yeah!

Oge was a little confused - why wasn't he winning?? :(

Even though he wasn't winning, he was still having a pretty good time. Lots of laughter, that's for sure!

But then, on the very last game, when we were neck and neck - 1 point needed for each of us to win... he won. :(

Anyway, I thought you might enjoy seeing some of those photos. I think sometimes people back home have the impression that I am suffering and enduring many hardships to do the work that I do here. This is not to say that there aren't difficult times because there are. This is also not to say that I don't meet my fair share of "cultural bumps." However, this is to say that I have moments of "luxury" and fun in this country as well. You just gotta look for the right places.

Lastly, I thought I would share this little bit. As many of you know, I am constantly amazed at what money can pay for here. I still remember when I found out that Robenson got kicked out of school briefly because his mother couldn't afford $32 for 4 months of schooling. Today was another one of those moments.

Tonight I handed out money for 8 boys to take their school exams (yes, they have an exam fee AND if you're in certain grades they make you pay to get the certificate saying you took the test as well), 4 boys to get new sandals, and 3 boys to get some food for themselves and their families. Total, all of this cost less than $75. CRAZY. Anyway, I thought I would pass along their big smiles and loud "THANK YOUs" to all of you as well. God is good!

For now, I'm off to bed. Sending love to all of you. See some of you in a week from tomorrow! :)


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