In Septemeber 2008, I traveled 6000 miles to Haiti's Kenscoff mountains. My mission: to care for some of the orphaned and abandoned, the sick, malnourished and premature infants of this beautiful but beleagured Caribbean nation.

Thursday, 1 January 2009

Bon Ane

The Haitans are a deeply spiritual people and to mark the New Year, they attended church en mass last night. It seems that today and not Christmas is the main feast day of the festive season. It is a double celebration; the first of January is Independence day in Haiti.

At GLA, we all celebrated with Squash soup. This is significant for the descendants of freed slaves because under French rule, Africans were not permitted to drink this rich and fragrant soup. Soup Janmou as the Haitians call it was eaten by everyone at GLA today. I am told that consuming this will bring me luck.

I was pleased to be able to spend New Years Eve at the toddler house, where we made Dutch Donuts (Ollie Bollen), played a board game and watched a DVD. At mid-night we went out to the balcony. The nannies in the rooms below broke out in song and fireworks were exploding over the mountain tops and down in the valleys. The children, who were snuggly tucked up in bed, slept through all of this.

We started work at 10am this morning but otherwise, it was business as usual. I made a visit to one of my NICU graduates, who celebrated his first birthday today. I offered him a little piece of cake to mark this special event. To my great surprise, he screwed up his face and spat it out. He was much more impressed with my rendition of "Happy Birthday." Poor kid.... anyone who knows me knows me knows I am not very tuneful. Maybe the birthday boy understood the love behind the gesture???


Big Al, the gal said...

Hi, it sounds like New Years was wonderful!

Big Al, the gal said...

Ok, that last post was a test to make sure you moderate your comments.

Maybe I am wrong, but I wonder if the little birthday boy who graduated from NICU might have been sweet Luc. I've been crying for days about missing his birthday (in addition to Christmas). If it was Luc you were talking about, thank you so much for loving on him. It made me cry.

It's nice to read your blog and be reminded of the deep love you feel for the children. You are so brave and strong to open your heart like you do.

God bless you.

-Allison Garwood(Luc's aching-hearted Mommy)

Anonymous said...

I know it's late , however Happy New Year,from Auntie Kay and all the family. Once again thanks for all the hard work you are putting in. It's great that you are keeping us informed about all the little ones.