I have been playing hostess for the past 10 days to two nuns, a recent college grad, a heart patient, and an errand boy. Sounds like a bad joke, huh? But it's not. It's the reality of life in Haiti. The nuns live in Pestel, a small mountain village near Jeremie, on the south part of the island. They have been friends of Vanessa's for some time so they are accustomed to staying at our place at Delmas 91 every time they come through Port-au-Prince. Since I have been living here, they have stayed 3 times so now they are not just Vanessa's friends but mine too. The heart patient is a young man from their village and Angel Missions arranged life-saving surgery for him last year. The errand man and the college grad came along for the ride, so with 6 people, my Shoebox was ready to burst!
Having guests for an extended period of time means a lot of little tasks such as buying 5 gallons of water on foot (good heavens, 6 people go through a lot of drinking water!), taking out trash on foot to a dumpster 10 minutes away, and trying to keep the house relatively clean. It also means odd curfew hours - the nuns and the 2 men tend to go to sleep quite early, so my usual evening email and blog time evaporated. Furthermore, 3 extra white people in the house makes the neighborhood kids go ga-ga. They are at my door frequently when it's just me here; with the potential for more playmates though, they were here non-stop during the entire 10 days. They especially loved Katie, the young college grad.
Frantz has never been to school so at age 6, he knows no letters, and he can't even count beyond 1-2-3. I have been working with him and this week, Katie and the heart patient took over on the days that they were home. Last night, Frantz wrote a letter F of his own accord for the first time ever and counted all the way to 7 without a mistake. Good work, team!