Sunday, January 24, 2010


One of the things that I have learned during my time abroad is that you have to be very flexible. This trait has definitely been very important during this trip. I have completely packed and unpacked all of our stuff every single day since I have been here, and we are both still in Haiti.

When we went to bed last night we were told that both of us were for sure leaving today. Then this morning they said that one of us would leave and the other would stay for sure. At the last minute we were told that Agape was providing an escort and there would be no room for either of us. They were trying to be helpful, but it really made things more difficult for us. Nick and I were already prepared for this, knew all about the meds, paperwork, formulas, etc. And then we had to re-explain it all to people who don’t even know the kids.

We got an email saying that the plane was landing in 1 hour and we needed to get there by that time. With the 45 min drive, this means that we had 15 minutes to wake the kids up from their naps, dress them, do their hair, have them say goodbye to everyone, and leave. I was in the very back of the car with 3 young toddlers, and at one point I was sure that one was going to get sick on my leg. The roads are all dirt and very bumpy.

The kids were so scared and sad to leave that it broke my heart. One little boy that I had already become really close with held on to my legs the entire time and wouldn’t let anyone but me hold him. They all cried when we left them. It was nice because we could walk out on the tarmac and buckle them in. This is such a confusing thing for these kids, so we would have liked them to have a familiar face, but we were just glad that they were able to get home to their families.

While we were at the airport 6 more short term volunteers came in to work at COTP. They ended up having a ton of luggage, so we couldn’t all fit into the car. I told Jamie that if he needed I could stay there until he came back. He said that he had a better idea and then put me and two of our nannies on a moto! Anyone who has been to a 3rd world country knows how crazy the driving can be. Now imagine that you are on a motorcycle with 3 other people and a large duffle bag. We all barely fit but we made it! I had a blast! The only part that was a bummer is that most of the way is dirt roads, so if you pass anyone your eyes get full of dirt. We had no helmets on the prevent dust in our face. The roads are covered in huge pot holes, no that’s an understatement, more like mini lakes, so we often had to get off the bike, walk around the water, and then get back on. We would ride another 50 feet, get off, walk around, and get back on! It was fun though!

While we were at the airport Nick was back at COTP waiting for a Helicopter from the military to bring us some kids that have been in a hospital on a ship. Helicopters were flying by all day but none of them landed in the back field with more babies. Maybe they will fly them in tomorrow. While he was out in the field waving a red blanket around one of the neighbors started yelling at him, Nick told the man that he didn’t speak Creole, however he just continued to speak more Creole and do more crazy gestures. He figured that he was upset that we were trying to land a helicopter in the back field. After we got someone else to translate we figured out that he just wants us to trim some branches on a tree that leans over his property because sticks keep falling on his garden!

I was just told that I am “for sure” leaving tomorrow on a small plane with two of our kids! We’ll see if this happens or not! We have clearance for them to go as well as a flight, so it could be a real possibility unless they provide a chaperone for them!

Yesterday I took the lions to school and they absolutely loved it! When I told we were going, they all jumped up and down and shouted, then sprinted across the yard to school. They sang songs and played with all the toys! I didn’t do much educational stuff because I was trying to get a feel for it, but they still loved it! Since then they all ask me, “Nikki, lekol (school) tomorrow?” I have to tell them maybe because I never know if I’ll be here tomorrow or not and I don’t want to get their hopes up!

I feel like today I finally started to get attached to the kids and have a good feel for how things run around here. Tonight while Nick and I were brushing the kids teeth, I picked up to infants and told Nick that I had my luggage and was ready to go. He responded with “you get 50 lbs, you might as well get your money worth.” If that’s the case, then we can bring several of these guys home! Good thing all but 3 of these kids have families (either biological or adoptive) because I might be tempted to kidnap one or more!

It was nice to spend some time alone with two of the nannies today because it really forced me to work on my Creole. Tennessee, one of the nannies speaks some English and together we can speak Crenglish and get by pretty well, with lots of hand motions thrown in of course. She helps me with depot, sorting the clothes, everyday and is so sweet!

1 comment:

  1. this is amazing.

    when i went to fill up your kitties' water today, there was a dead lady bug in it. i was very, very confused. miss you guys!!!