Thursday, January 9, 2014

Day 2- Libby's Point of View

Today I woke up and it was surprisingly cool out. I found myself slipping on my jacket for breakfast (only to shed it within the half hour) I've adjusted to the temperatures nicely. My breakfast was comprised of cornmeal and vegetables in a warm mushy glob. It tasted good and i ate half of it before filling up on passion fruit juice, the most amazing juice I've ever had. I am usually the pickiest person you'd ever meet but Haitian food seems to be agreeing with my taste buds (and stomach thank goodness).

After breakfast, we filled up our water bottles and hopped into the tap tap, a truck with a covered wagon in the back. It's like the We drove across a bridgeless river to the village of Cormier. We walked to the community center to meet and listen to presentations made by the leaders of different sections of the trip. We heard from the education, agriculture, health, and herbalist groups. (How cool is that?) The education leader spoke about how children do not have a lot of resources to get education because it's very expensive and any type of university schooling is only located in Port au Prince. The health group talked about the prevalence of teen pregnancy.

For both the agriculture and herbalism, we had field work (25cent TVHS word). We walked about 5 minutes to a mango tree field. This was so interesting because they were talking about whether or not the mango trees were actually helpful since they were planted so close too each other. When that happens, the mangos trees produce smaller mangos and less of them. They are working to figure out vegetables to grown in the shade of the mango trees. During the herbalist presentation, we toured a few buildings that had belonged to the best herbalist in the area and we learned about the rituals involved with this aspect of the culture. They also started picking up plants on the sides of the paths and talking about their properties. The best part about our field work was that they took us into this building made of glass bottles and concrete. It was so beautiful because the light shone through the bottles and lit up the inside. It was absolutely amazing.

When we returned to the village center we ate lunch, which was the same food as last night's dinner. We joined in dancing with the drums and boy, can we dance!!! I'm kidding. I could not get the feet and once I did understand the feet movements, they threw in arm movements. It was a lot of fun with a lot of smiles. After that, we relaxed by coloring, surrounded by dozens upon dozens of small children, all grabbing for crayons and papers. I really liked interacting with the children, even if we couldn't understand each other.

We left the village on the tap taps shortly after we finished coloring. We were briefly chased by the friends we made. Back at the hotel,  I ate delicious salmon and veggies and with beans and rice. Now we are chilling with each other in one room. I am really looking forward to tomorrow and meeting new people and seeing yesterday's friends. Hurray!

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