Days Become Weeks

Days Become Weeks

This post was a little delayed being posted because I wanted to add pictures since I don’t have a card reader and I didn’t have internet. Sorry still no photo’s I’ll update when I can

It’s been a few days since my last blog, much has happened it’s just hard to keep track of what has. There are so many things that go on in just a single day here at Kè Kontan.

Jodnice is out of the hospital for starters. We’re still trying to get her into the Children’s hospital… still no luck. The past few days that we’ve had Jodline without her sister because of the hospitalization she’s shown a lot “growing” she actually laughs now, and wants to play; Emily and I seem to think it’s because she felt she lacked attention when her sister was around (I feel like I already wrote about that in my last blog, oh well).

It seems everyone around the house has been sick… except me *knock on wood* . Sorry don’t have much else to report on that.

I started working on the back corner of the backyard for the chicken coop that Val and I are supposed to make. Let’s just say the garbage never seems to stop showing up, I’m pretty certain that’s where the last tenants used to throw/burn… most likely just bury their garbage. I actually mentioned in one of my previous blogs, before I arrived in Haiti about the garbage issue that there’s here, not from personal experience at the time but from another blog I had read from other people who had been living in Haiti for many years. The analogy that was given went along the lines of “using a garbage pick to pick up garbage in Haiti is like trying to clean grease out of a pan with a fork.” Today I think I felt this analogy, I would finally think I cleared out the area or a section and pull up another layer of trash and then another… and then 3 more layers. Let’s just says to give the chickens a clean area to live it may take a few days. I’m hoping I get it cleared by the time the eggs hatch.

Pardon on my writing, I’m on a slight sugar high right now, Emily and I and a few of the kids made a Gingerbread House. Eating that thing is the most sugar I’ve eaten in… I want to say years; Must say it was a blast and my section of the house turned out rather nice, Emily’s on the other hand I think she just wanted to hurry and make it so she could eat it. We’re both feeling the effects of way too much sugar. Side not the kids loved it, they’d never seen one before 🙂

Haiti 2012 003

in a few days there’s going to be a large amount of volounteers showing up all at one, well within a few days of each other. We luckily found a cheap place to get some bunk beds which is great, saving money is key. We had to go through the downtown area to get to where we were buying the beds and let me tell you that was something else, seeing thousands of people within minutes and for a couple of miles as well, it was something else. By the time we returned back home I was exhausted,

There’s a lot of factors in Haiti that make you tired and the days turn in to weeks, you kind of lose track of the days in a sense. The heat alone sucks the life out of you despite it feeling great (I don’t miss the snow/ cold at home). Then you have the kids which run around non stop and seem to never run out of energy and drive you mad, but yet they make everything worth it. Any time you step out of the orphanage and go traveling the way I would describe it is “Over Stimulating” if that makes any sense? There’s so much to see and so much happening your mind can’t soak it all up. These are the major things I’ve found to drain you energy in a single day. I’m not complaining… well maybe a little, but you have to feel the bad before you can experience the good, so far I’ve felt more good than bad <3.

I know there’s probably a ton that I’ve missed on sharing with everyone but don’t worry there will be more blogs for you. I hope everyone is enjoying the reads so far.

“There’s no good without bad”

Usual problems

Usual problems

Sorry about the delay in blogging again, I think the theme for this post is pretty relevant. First off my computer screen won’t turn on… why? Great question I’d love to know as well since I had shut it off, then tried turning it on the following morning with that issue. In the mean time Emily was kind enough to lend me her spare computer to use. Now I can keep you up to date on things… well try anyway.

Thursday (Dec 6) Emily and I went to the hospital with the twins to get some more tests done. We got there super early to get things done and because they told us we had to be there in the morning. So the fun started when we got there. We got sent to one area waited for ever as Emily and I were passing out from being so tired it was around quarter to 7 AM. Finally the nurse got to us and sent us to the malnourished clinic where we didn’t need to go; After nurses from there found out what we needed we were sent back. I’m just going to cut this story short and tell you we got sent to about 4 other places in the hospital after that. Em and I eventually got to the right place and got the tests done. 4 hours at the hospital for something that took less than 20 minutes TIH (This is Haiti).

I learned TIH from Emily the other day after we went to the hospital for more test which weren’t even available during the weekend despite being told to return Saturday and Sunday. What had happened after we left is what brought on the TIH quote. We were headed back when the drive drove into a pot hole that was filled with water and we got stuck (by pot hole I mean hole 15” by about 20 feet”; I was worried that the engine would get flooded luckily it didn’t. Since we were stuck the driver yelled out to this huge dump truck driving by and asked him to back into us, as to push us further into the pot hole, but would get us un-stuck/ moving… it worked. Never really imagined myself being rear-ended by a dump truck into a flooded pot hole with 2 small infants in our arms.

Saturday night came around and we finally got power back! It only took 3 day maybe 4? I lost track. Our power system finally got fixed and it only cost us $25… this time. As I write this post I’m actually using my solar charger because despite the power being fixed, the government likes to choose when they feel you can have power.

Because my other computer broke I kind of lost track of what happened on what days, so I’m just going to throw out some random stuff that happened. The other day one of Emily’s friends came over to visit and it was a great visit first off because Maeve is a blast to hang with, secondly we got to blow of steam about all the nonsense we’ve been having to deal with; the hospital, lack of power, low water levels, and the desks being almost 2 weeks over due being finished. Later at night the 3 of us did some photo’s in the dark like shadow pictures and light painting :).

painting light Shadows

I recently got some video of us in traffic and how it flows in Haiti, this time it was rather smooth nothing too crazy. I plan on making a time lapse and posting it but unfortunately I won’t be able to post it until I return from Haiti and the end of January. I have to tell you the traffic and the way things work would probably baffle most of you and give the rest heart attacks.

The other day I played soccer with the kids from our orphanage and from the tent city. Soccer consists of a partially deflated basket ball, 1 ½ foot nets made of rocks, and kids that never run out of energy. I think I did rather well. I was exhausted and luckily my legs weren’t killing me the following day, It was so much fun though.

Today Sunday (Dec 9) the desks are almost done they just need some wood added so that you can sit on them and have a writing top. Some of the families from the tent city came over so that we could register them for our “non official” English classes (for the kids) since we’re not a registered school. I think we have almost a full class and it starts tomorrow so please pray for us and that all goes well!

So it’s super hot out today I’m in the sun so that I can get some colour and so the solar chargers stay charged a bit while I used the computer. I forgot to mention as well that the computer I’m using has to have a power source because the battery won’t charge. That means when the solar charger dies computer shuts off… Bring on the SUN! **UPDATE** My face got a little burnt.

Yesterday was the birthday of one of the girl who Emily used to take care of at the old orphanage, so today Emily invited the the girls from the old place that she used to take care of over so that we could have a party. We all just had lunch together, there was just the perfect amount of chairs which was great. Later tonight we are having pizza and I think we’ll have balloons too!

Lunch

Thanks again for following my blog every one have a great day.

Cite Soleil

Cite Soleil

Day 2

Today (Nov. 29) Emily and I had to head to Cite Soleil to pick up 2 children who are malnourished and very underweight for a year and 2 months old. If I had to guess I would have said they were 5 months.

All day Emily and I took a tap tap around town It was pretty hot out but I have to say I didn’t mind sweating; I sure don’t miss the cold.

Em had to stop at Western Union so she could get some money for the driver to put gas in the tap tap. Before we headed off again we stopped at Epidor. The sandwiches were pretty good… when I first saw the sign it looked like the mascot was a joint turns out it was just a sub.

When I came to Haiti I was told by many people who had been here before to drop all expectations and I did; everything we do just kind of flows and feels “normal” as like I’ve been doing it for a while. Every so often I step back and go Wow in Canada this would never be happening such as not wearing seat belts holding the kids in the front seat or going into an intersection with cars going 6 different ways. All of this I didn’t feel shocked about until I stepped back for second and was like “hey this isn’t the norm.” at least not for me.

I think I’m adjusting well the only thing I think I’m trying to get used to is every one staring at the blanc I feel like I say a sign that says tourist. Other than that life is pretty nice so far.

We got back from our day in Cite Soleil and we were both tired, just looking at everything going on around you is pretty draining. The kids adjusted really well to the babies and happened to be very helpful.

I received some donations of clothing before I came and it’s already been put to use these little girls needed some clean clothes and we were able to provide them J.

Some of the kids from the tent city came over to play with the boys I took some photos and video while I was watching Jodline & Jodnice (the new baby girls). Christine has grown pretty fond of Justin Beiber (me) and likes to bug me for piggy back rides sometimes it’s hard to say no even when I’m exhausted because she’s so cute. I digress, Christine was sitting with me and wanted to take pictures of me taking care of the babies so I let her play with my camera for a bit… no pictures actually took :P. The boys saw that my camera was out and wanted to be filmed playing soccer, so I filmed them a bit. Later Don came over and insisted on filming so I guided him through it and the kids went nuts. After about 5 minutes of going all out they would run to Don and want to watch themselves, it was cute watching them laugh and talk about what they did.

Today the desks for the English classes were supposed to be made but I guess they got in trouble for using too much electricity from the welder… so there’s another small delay.

The night seemed to drag on, not really a bad thing but every time Em and I looked at the clock is was still 5:30 or 6:15. It was dark out so it felt like 10:30 since we were so drained, the heat and excitement all day tends to take it out of you, it’s starting to make since why Caribbean countries are so laid back.

We were playing domino’s eating and suddenly she was bit by something and kept biting her and was in her shirt. The biting went away then a few minutes later came back and was working down her shirt and I was joking about ants in her pants… sure enough whatever it was made it down to her pants, turns out it was an ants. I had a good laugh her felt bad but it was funny at the same time.

The two girls we brought in to take care of for a month until they are better are very well behaved and rarely wine but if food shows up they reach and reach. Another thing about these girls they are cute when sleeping but they seem to find their way to the concrete. Emily and I keep putting them on the mat but they must love the cold.

IMG_9591

There’s not much else going on right now just sitting around the table with Emily enjoying the what seems to be pretty much perfect shorts and T-shirt weather, not too hot/cold or humid J… Haha be jealous.

Packing Away!

I’ve got most of the packing done but I actually just paid for a 3rd bag today as I will need more room for supplies. first here’s a little treat I made a time-lapse video of the packing!

 

As for the supplies here’s a post from Emily today. My departure and arrival couldn’t be at a better time!

 

Maison Ke Kontan- after some discussion- has decided that we will be opening our doors to the children of the tent city for free English classes every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday @2pm- 5pm. To be able to offer these children a great learn

ing environment we will need to purchase the following items: 

A chalk board
15 small desks
Writing utensils for each child
Booklets 

We would also like to provide the children with a snack or meal each day as well as vitamins. If anyone is interested in becoming involved with this project or wishes to sponsor one of the items above to get our classroom going please message me or email me at emily@himeforhelp.org 

or visit our website at www.himeforhelp.org

“Don’t forget to smile!”
~Justin Parkinson

Goodbye’s Begin

There’s only 7 days in my way before I leave for Haiti and I have to say I’m very excited. I’m starting to say my goodbye’s especially because today is my last day at work.

A lot of questions are being thrown at me and the one that I find comes up the most is are you afraid? Honestly I’m not, like anything else I go day by day and experience life as it comes because you don’t know which one will be your last; I’m in God’s hands. I like to tell myself that you can’t let fear get in the way of doing things that will make you happy. If there’s one thing I would pass on from my personal experiences pertaining to the question “How are you not afraid?”  is that: you should be happy with the things you’ve done to date, even if in the past you’ve done things that you’re not proud of, it’s probably affected you to become who you are to day and who you will be in the future.

“Where you’re at and who you are today is not who you are now, it’s the person you were in the past.”

Last night 11/19/2012 I went to the “Christmas in Haiti” dinner at Blazin BBQ. I have to say it was delicious and rather satisfying. I guess the turn out was fantastic, around 60 people showed up. Nikki (one of the girls who put on the event) believes that everyone showed up that purchased a ticket which means: presents for the Kids at Maison Ke Kontan!

I’ve done some other updates on my Facebook page about the wristbands that were ordered, I was selling them at $3 each and they were gone in an instant. Here’s the “unveiling” video I recorded.

Emily’s mum will be ordering more bracelets in bulk… actually she already ordered them which is great! If you’re interested in purchasing one or a few, you can shoot me an email or leave a comment.

Email: Justinparkinson@hotmail.com

I also recorded another video of me taking one of my prescriptions to assist with adjusting to the food in Haiti as well prevent Cholera.

VIDEO

I don’t think I will be posting another blog until next Tuesday when I’m Stuck at the airport waiting… Well you never know I may have a surprise post with all the details on how packing is coming… which I have yet to start. I have a good amount of stuff that was donated and I need to cram into 2 bags. I don’t have much to pack for myself a couple of shirts and shorts and some hygiene stuffz.

Like I said the days are counting down and I’m getting super excited and I can’t wait to share my experiences with you on here keep checking the blog and subscribe!

See you soon Em!

The meaning of life is just to be alive. It is so plain and so obvious and so simple. And yet, everybody rushes around in a great panic as if it were necessary to achieve something beyond themselves.

~Alan Watts

Whether you think that you can, or that you can’t, you are usually right.

~Henry Ford

Christmas In Haiti

Hey everyone a little more than 20 days before I leave for Haiti I’m so excited!

There’s not too much to report but I’ve had some awesome support to date. I’m still around $400 short towards my goal but I’m still leaving Nov 27th regardless. I am gathering supplies  for the orphanage for when I leave such as:

  • Sheets
  • Cloths
  • Batteries (AA, AAA)
  • Anything else people have to offer

If you’re interested in contributing or even donating money let me know, I’d be happy to come pick up some stuff as long as you’re not too far away. Contact info as usual:

– Cell: 226.345.2951 (Leave a message if needed)
– Email: Justinparkinson@hotmail.com

Continue reading

Count Down Begins

Great news every one I have an official date of departure, it’s going to be November 27th!

I did a lot of searching to find the best deals so that less money would go towards the plane pricing and more would go toward the kids and the amount of time I can stay in Haiti!

Originally American Airlines was the best price but me being persistent I kept searching and found that Spirit was the best price. Although AA offered 1 free checked bag the cost of just the flight was way too high. When looking in to Spirit I had to pay for every bag but it still brought the price cheaper than AA.

At first I was a little discourage because it said I had to pay for the carry on $20! yikes. Good news was you can have a “personal bag” which is free, it just has to fit under you seat. A carry on would be what goes over head 🙂 duh, silly me. For my personal bag I’ll just be bringing my camera for documenting of course, my laptop for movies since I have about an 11 hour lay over! I’m also going to bring maybe a tooth-brush and extra clothes just in case.

I purchased 2 checked bags ahead of time to save some money which was around $60 relatively not bad. One bag or half of it is going to be for my stuff IE: clothes, hygiene stuff. The other Half of the bag and secondary bag will be stuff for the kids/ orphanage supplies.

I’m super excited to leave now that I have a date and it think I’ll be able to get some cool footage and fun footage in the air port… probably from losing my mind waiting for ever for the next flight.

 

I actually really enjoy flying I’ve been over sea’s a few times. I must say I feel bad for people who have trouble flying, I find it invigorating. I’ve even thought about becoming a flight attendant at one point, who knows maybe I still will for a year or two. Who can turn up cheap flights right?

So enough about the departure, Emily’s mom and I have been looking into making/ creating new merchandise. I was thinking about doing car magnets and Heather (Em’s mom) was thinking about rubber/Silicone bracelets. I went ahead and did a bit of research and made some tester items, I ordered 1 Bracelet and a magnet with 2 different sets of magnet looks.

I’ll keep every one up to date on Facebook and here let me know what you think if you have any suggestions or have any contacts for merchandise just shoot me an email (justinparkinson@hotmail.com).

 

Mwen paka tann pou mwen vin Ayiti!

 

Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?

– Matthew 6:26

If God takes care of the birds and flowers, how much more will He take care of you if you will just trust HimInstead of looking at your problemsset your eyes onHim and don’t let the cares of the world drag you down.

-Unknown