Friday, January 22, 2010

Hope for Haiti

I haven't been to Haiti. Last year, Justin and I spent a day in the Dominican Republican. We were about 150 miles from Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The Dominican Republic is not a common cruise stop. It's a poor country. After our guided tour, Justin and I ventured into Samana Town on our own for lunch. It was a cultural experience, to say the least. We were followed by all kinds of pathetic looking peddlars. Children begging us to buy seashells for fifty cents followed us on foot for a quarter mile and probably would've followed us even farther except that cops ran off the beggars.



We ate lunch at a little outside restaurant that basically looked like the front yard of a house. There was a white picket fence around the "yard area." Policeman patrolled the sidewalk and street to make sure beggars stayed outside of the fence.

the little row of quaint shops and restaurants. while they are seriously cute, they don't give any idea of the surrounding squalor we walked through to get there.

On our tour, Justin sat next to the guide and talked to him for an hour or so. His mother was Haitian and he told us a lot about Haiti. He told us that despite how poor the Dominican Republican looked, Haiti was much worse. The DR has a huge problem with illegal immigration from Haiti. He compared it to the US and Mexican immigration.

At the time, I really wondered about how poor Haiti must be if their people would rather risk a legal nightmare to go into a country where tthe best opportunity for a better life was to peddle sea shells to tourists for 50cents.

Tonight we watched "Hope for Haiti." On a side note, Joci really digs Justin Timberlake. :) Although we've already donated some money to the Red Cross, Justin tried to donate on the show since celebrities were answering the phones and taking the donations. He wanted to see who he'd get to talk to - Stevie Wonder? Taylor Swift? Steven Spielberg? Jennifer Aniston?

We haven't been able to get through all night.

And that's so miraculous.

I can only imagine how many people's hearts were touched. It's been a tough couple of years. America is having its own mini crisis, yet we know our priorities when others need more.

Sorry, I don't mean to get all preachy and philosophical. It's just on my mind. I can't help but be so grateful for the roof over my head, to know exactly where all my family members and loved ones are, to be able to get a glass of water in my own kitchen, and to have to luxury of going to a movie tomorrow.

Anyway, tonight, my heart's in Haiti.



1 comment:

Wendy said...

I linked over here from the r house to see your sealing pictures but your Haiti post caught my attention.

I loved what you wrote about Americans having their own mini crisis but still being able to see where help is needed else where.

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