There was loss of life, loss of a phenomenal amount of crops, plus loss of a lot of animals that people had to sell – to feed their children and to pay for their children’s schooling. A lot of people in this area lost crops and animals but by far the greater damage was done outside the Artibonite Valley where we live. I took an early morning walk along the canal the day after Isaac had pounded Haiti. Even in this area I saw a lot of water where there used to be crops. I was sad to see dead cows and goats. One thing that helped keep the flooding down in this area was the fact that the canal that runs outside HATS had been almost empty for a few days. The water had been turned off at the dam due to repair work being done. If it had been full it would most likely have flooded its banks. (Whenever I see flooding, or think about it. my thoughts and prayers turn to the Phillipines where the people are suffering greatly from the flood waters.)
|Almost empty canal meant it could not flood and make things a lot worse|
|Under this water lies gardens of crops planted by people in the area|
On returning from my walk in the mud and water I saw something that touched me greatly. Two boys were sitting just outside our school compound with sticks for fishing in the yucky water of the ditch, that is between us and the road, hoping to catch something to take home to eat.
|Two little boys early morning after the storm fishing in the ditch outside our school.|
On Friday, here at HATS I spent a lot of time running around both compounds making sure that everything that could be blown around was moved into a building. That was no small feat on the school compound. There were mounds of school desks outside as the workers were doing the finishing cement work in classrooms, as well as lots of other things being used by the workers. It, however, was all safely put away before Isaac hit.
Too, I had the children’s dressers, all clothes on hangers, and all children’s mattresses moved into the living rooms of both childrens’ homes. The rooms all have screens, and bars on the windows for protection, but nothing to keep the rain out if the wind should blow in their direction.
Saturday morning after extremely high winds and heavy rain the whole night I went to see the children. The kids were all bundled up in the warmest clothing they could find – a sweater or jacket they have on hand in case temps drop to 25 or 26 in Dec or Jan. Ti Luc went down with me and he too was in the warmest clothing he had. (Clothing that friends in Yarmouth had sent that I thought he would need only for Canada.) He needed it Saturday, and greatly appreciated it.
|Ti Luc nice & warm tks to Sheila and Bruce|
The kids were thrilled to see Ti Luc and I all bundled up. Me in a rain coat and Ti Luc in a garbage bag, over his warm pants and shirt.
|Ti Luc with a garbage bag raincoat during Isaac|
When there, however, I could not see Jonathan. One of the house mothers told me to go look in her room. She had her bed pulled into the middle of her room. She had placed her closet and other things behind it, in front of a window, to block the heavy rain. I found Jonathan under her bed in warm clothing, sleeping soundly, snug as a bug in a rug. Too cute.
|Jonathan dry and snug as a bug under house mother’s bed during Storm Isaac|
Work continues at the school. The classrooms are now finished inside and they are doing the outside. We are anxious to see it finished and the workers gone. Even then there will be a lot of work for us to do before school can open.
|School – Cement work continuing|
Despite the results of Isaac outside and the rain that was continuing Sunday morning we held our service – but on this compound instead of the school. I received a pleasant surprise by a duet from Moise and Ti Luc and another by Dieunel and Judel.
|Our Sunday service – duet Moise and Ti Luc|
|Another Sunday morning duet – Dieunel & Judel|
|Another aspect of our Sunday service|
Now for the sad news about Antoinette. She delivered a baby boy Saturday morning but the baby died Saturday evening. There is now a lot of sadness in that family replacing the joy of early Saturday. All her HATS family feel sad for their loss too. Thank you to those of you who already know the news and have sent messages for Antoinette. She was very touched when I passed them on by telephone.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you one and all for your love and support.
Remember: One child’s life being changed is more important than all the material things this world has to offer.
IT IS ALL ABOUT THE CHILDREN.