This first week in Haiti has passed faster than a turtle on a skateboard. I've been caught in a very un- stereotypically Caribbean whirlwind of bustling activity. There has been a lot of work for me to do and more than anything I think I have appreciated feeling useful.
I finally unpacked my suitcases last night. My apartment is inside the walled enclosure of St. Jacques Church in Petion Ville - a short walk from the Diocesan office. The music school, St. Trinity, now resides there. For those of you who have spent a summer in Sewanee, TN during the Summer Music Festival, you can imagine the mostly delicious cacophony of classical sounds that I enjoy every day. Another perk is that there is a piano right outside my room for me to mess around with anytime I feel the urge.
Over the course of the past week, I've slept in Les Cayes, Cange, and Port au Prince. In Les Cayes, I translated for two terrific techies, Todd and Tony, as they worked with Business and Technology Institute technician, Denis, to prepare the computer lab there for the coming semester. Learning some much needed computer skills was a positive byproduct for me. From Les Cayes, I traveled with the Partnership Program director to the Diocesan Conference on Reconstruction in Cange. Renowned economist, Kesner Pharel, spoke to the group of 20 influential leaders within the church about dreaming big and planning precisely. My job was to take minutes in English.
One of my favorite moments from the past week:
A friend of mine, Amorce Dugé, recently purchased land which he will transform into a haven for artists of all sorts. Every year he hopes to facilitate a month long festival featuring different mediums each week. The artists will stay economically in 16 bungalows arranged around a pool and a large workshop space. Dugé himself writes novels and poetry. One early morning we scooted out to his land to dream about possibilities.