Haiti Journey: More than a Month Later

Article

Immediately after crossing from the DR into Haiti, you can see the visible downshift into a worse level of poverty.

The following has been re-posted to HCPLive.com with permission from Dr. Jan Gurley. You can visit her blog, Doc Gurley, at www.docgurley.com.

We stopped at Love A Child for just a moment, to coordinate medical contacts. Over 700 orphans are there, and tents cover the grounds.

When we got to the first collapsed building, silence fell on the bus. Within a few miles, we hit a hill so steep the bus couldn’t make it up, so we got out to lighten the load. That’s when, standing in an acrid cloud of burning brakes, I smelled it. Just a hint, but unmistakable. The smell of rotting corpse.

We trudged, grim and silent, up the hill, some guys gesturing to our driver how to get the bus out, another guy asking one of our group, “you American? You Americans?”

When we got back on the bus, the smell was thankfully gone. But after only a few miles, it grew strong enough to slither through our gently exhaling air conditioning.

As though something had been permanently damaged in all of us, our bus began to cry and moan.

Immediately after crossing from the DR into Haiti, you can see the visible downshift into a worse level of poverty. The major road around the lake is now, unbelievably after all these miles, dirt. Only an ankle-pile of rubble at the edge prevents flooding, making me wonder what will happen, in the rainy season, to the lifeline to Haiti.

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