Port au Prince, Haiti

After one of the more challenging travel days in my life (a delayed flight and a re-route, a cancelled flight and a re-route that I barely made, an aborted landing to avoid another plane on the runaway, a very late arrival, no bags and no-one to meet me due to all the travel changes) –I’m here. Port au Prince, a city I consider a home-away-from-home, has crumbled in so many places. We were not able to drive through the most devastated areas of the city, because those roads are still blocked–so we were spared some of the shocking horror that the news has shown.

The effect on me to see so many familiar buildings mangled and fallen, and tent cities dotting the way from the UN compound to Petionville, is heavy—-a heaviness that fills my heart in a very new and unknown way. As I spend more time here I’m sure I will have more stories to share—-for now I am sensing a large hole in a city that despite intense poverty and poor infrastructure has always been filled with vibrant color, movement, sound and life. There are signs of that vibrancy returning now; little Marchan stands selling fruit, toiletries, and even a few clothes. In tent cities children play ball and run and laugh, and people smile. Several people I said hello to this morning said “I am here, Thanks to God” when I asked them how they are.

Haiti has always been a place where the extremes dance side by side and she is even more that place now.

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