Hot water today! I just tried showering at the wrong time of day. I’m learning. I am amazed at the constant efforts of the Hope for LaGonave people to make and build relationships with the people of Haiti.
Another exciting ride organized by Cladel to the airport, and I learned that these makeshift taxis are called tap-taps. It makes sense, because you tap-tap on the side of the truck when you want to stop, then the driver slams on the brakes. Tap-tap!
A ride in an MAF (Mission Aviation Fellowship) plane! I have heard about these amazing pilots who fly tiny planes full of missionaries and goods all over the world. Now I have flown with one! He gave us humorous instructions (read the white card until you are scared to death) and then prayed for us, which I considered very wise, then somewhere between Hispanola and LaGonave handed the plane over to my husband. I considered this unwise, but he reclaimed the stick for landing. We buzzed the strip for goats, made a belly dropping, thrilling turn and landed with flair on the dirt strip. A tin and concrete block building with wide eyed, wide grinning children was the LaGonave international airport at Anse a Galet. First person we meet: D’umerle (pronounced Jamel), second person: Ones (Ohness), D’umerle is Ben’s Hatian brother…his little son is named Benshy. Ones drives us all over and I later learn has seriously mad driving skills.
“Blan! Ti Blan!” Whites! Little whites! The children yell as we bounced past, hoping for a smile and a wave. They got it, for we are all grinning to be here and happy to see the beautiful faces.
Madame Fifi is all “I Love You!” and oh-my-word yummy food. How is it possible that the food is so unbelievably good on LaGonave? Madame Fifi is sweet and takes an instant shine to the boys. The first night Sam-the-Never-Still sits on her lap for a solid twenty minutes. I love you, too, Fifi!
Swimming in the ocean, finding starfish and conch shells, talking, reuniting with old friends, fixing a generator, telling stories. This is the first day on LaGonave. Bon soir!