So, 2 months and change after the earthquake, and after raising (most of) the funds, I made it to Haiti today. For those of you who are my facebook friends, my status talked about a crazy story, and there definitely is. But you’ll have to wait a bit to get into that. My day started at 3 this morning (for those who know me, I don’t do 3 AM. I feel it infringes on the Chinese people’s time with God.) Anyway, our flight left Nashville at 6:15, which meant we had to be at the airport at 4:15. Thank goodness for Starbucks! Also, would especially like to thank my parents for taking me to the airport and my brother and his girlfriend for showing up and seeing me off. Meant a lot to me.
Anyway, we connected in Miami, and here’s where the story gets good. One of the team members, Danelle, was flying in from Buffalo, NY and meeting us in Miami. Her flight was scheduled in at 12. We had to get her bags (she flew from NY on US Air; we flew on American), and hightail it across the airport, and check them by 12:35 and board pretty much immediately, as the plane left at 1:30. I say “we” because I was volunteered to go locate her and get her to our terminal (it meant I had to leave a secure area and recheck in through security, then after bags were procured, reverse the process. Her flight got in 10 minutes early, so we’re looking good. But then, disaster strikes (I should be a mystery writer…). One of her bags came off the conveyor very early (like, 4th…). The second one, however, was THE LAST BAG OFF THE BELT! We RUN like mad, only to find out they closed the ability to put luggage on the plane about 5 minutes before we got there. But there’s hope! We are told if we talk to a supervisor, we can probably get the bags on. We beg the supervisor, and he agrees. One problem though. After all that, since she hadn’t checked in, they admitted someone on stand-bye and now she has no seat. So we have her BAGS on the flight, but not her. She has been officially bumped to Sunday am. Thankfully, she has friends in the Miami area, so she had a place to stay. I get to make the trip to the airport in the morning (in Port Au Prince, 3 hours away) to pick her up, then back to Jacmel. See? Told you it was crazy…
Ok, so here are my sleep-deprived thoughts of Haiti thus far. One, it looks a lot like I remember it, save for the buildings that are down. I took no pictures on the way here (first of all, because I wanted to spend the drive just observing….second of all, my phone was pretty much dead after all the back-and-forth from trying to get Danelle on the flight). I didn’t get to see Jacmel, as it was dark when we got there. But the Presidential Palace is gone. There are so many tent cities in PAP, both “real” tents and man-made. And there were a lot more people begging than last time. Also, more than one person had spray-painted “Obama is US President.” Hopefully, they will realize that they need Jesus more than Obama (we as Americans might do well to remember that, too…). Lastly, during the drive over the mountain to Jacmel, I had Third Day’s “These Thousand Hills” running through my head. I hadn’t listened to the song in a while, but wanted to share a little with you from it. It definitely seemed to fit:
These thousand hill roll ever on
In footprints of a Mighty God
They bring me to my knees in praise
Amazing love, amazing grace
Goodnight everyone! Will share more tomorrow!