I’m in paradise (Part 1)

Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere where, despite having more than 400 NGOs offering traditional aid, 54 percent of people live on less than $1 per day.  But this is not the story we want to tell you… let’s start again… I arrived to Port-au-Prince. Getting down the plane, we listened to local music sponsored by a well-established telecommunication company. The rhythm was joyful and made you start your journey with a smile.  Out of the airport, children were not begging in the streets —like in many other developing countries. Children in Haiti were perfectly uniformed and well on their way to school. What a sense of dignity we felt just observing them while they walked the long road to school.

We went to visit the local market guided by our friend Christine who lives in Port-au-Prince. As we walked we could see people who sat on the streets, carried goods and produce, brought charcoal, and fried food.  No matter the time of day, seems like streets were crowded, with sidewalks packed with vendors of all types. Vendors sat for hours until they got what they needed to keep going for one more day.  We checked-in at our hotel; there were not many hotel vacancies in Haiti but we always manage to get a room … yes this is Haiti... miracles happen! Hopefully soon many investors will come, will build some hotels here, will buy goods from these vendors, and will get fruits and vegetables from local framers.

At 1pm it was time to eat. So many choices: local food, modern international food, Italian pizza. I went for poulet and banan pessez. Yes, chicken with fried bananas! and some “pickleez” please!!  For dessert how about passion fruit sorbet…or cherry juice? We needed to keep working so this time I passed on the Rhum Sour.

—The Haiti Bug