Friday, October 28, 2011

I just realized I never really wrapped up "My Haitian adventure", and that was about 5 months ago. I miss my kids there, my students, the kids at the orphanage, the kids at church. I miss Haiti, I constantly feel the need to go back, it really does feel like home there. It was a life changing experience. I'm glad I took the year off school, and it confirmed what I already knew, that I love to teach. Which is what I am now working towards, I have gone back to school ( In northern Canada none the less) and am working towards my bachelor's of elementary education. Which brings a change of blog title, to "My Northern adventure". Haiti will still be a big part of my life and my blog, but I'm also going to move on to other things in life, and adjusting to a so called northern life. Thanks for following me in Haiti, and hope you still follow me!

Friday, April 1, 2011

School days

I really haven't posted much about school and a typical day we have. So I thought I would show you a typical day in pictures

My day typically starts at 7 am when I get to school, where I mark test, books, submit the grades to the office and get the new work books for the kids in my building
Photo taken by Carolyn Walker

8 am comes fast, and its time to start our day with Praise, worship and morning prayer

Then comes time to get to work, We use ACE ( a home school curriculum) and each day a student has to work in their PACE books which consist of English, Science, Social Studies, Math and Word building(spelling)

making maps of God's world

Making maps of the world

Joshua working in his math book

Michael working on math

Joshua working on spelling

Of course lunch and break ensure silliness and games from the kids

Borislav and Olivier playing a hand clapping game

Christian and Michael

Its not a lunch break with out little hands braiding my hair
Dainah, Me, Dadyd, Christie

That pretty much sums up a day at school. After school most days involves a nap before anything else in the day is accomplished,

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Everyone has a Petite-Homme story....

If you have been to visit El Shaddai school you have come across some interesting people and students there. There are some very interesting people there with some very interesting lives, and one of them is Pastor Petite-Homme. Our grade two teacher. Every one that has visited and come in contact with him, has a story about him, mist visitors remember him as the man that teaches the students hymns while playing his accordion. I have my fair share of Petite-Homme stories, but I think I had the list topper today while teaching. Though I need to describe him for you to get the full picture as best as you can. Smaller built man, about my hight, wears very wide rimmed glasses, and has a unique personality. He always refers to me as Sister Crystal, around 50 years old, has eight kids, and two grandkids, oldest in her mid twenties, and youngest is 5 years old. Did I mention a unique personality? Anyways on to the story... I was standing in my class room with one of the other teachers,David, and all my students ( My class room is a screened in porch). They were telling me about the book that they had just read practicing using their english. It is quite normal for kids walking along the road below to yell hi to me, knowing I'm there and will say hi back, but today took an interesting turn of events, as the kids were yelling more than just hi to me in creole, which I just ignored, that is until my class started to laugh. I continued to just ignore it like I normally do. Suddenly one of my students decides to tell me what they are saying. "Miss Crystal, they're saying you smell like poo." Well, I couldn't exactly continue with both my students and my self distracted by these boys, so I simply tell them in creole to go away, and David is telling them a bit more elaborately in creole to go away as well. In the down stairs class Petite-Homme is hearing all this going on, and decides to take maters into his own hands, because next thing I know he his running out the gate, with a rubber ruler in his hand that he uses to spank the kids. Best way to picture this is to think of an old farmer running out the door of his house shot gun in hand. As soon as these boys see him, the split into different directions so Petite-Homme cant get them. I turned around bursting out laughing at the scene in front of me, when I turned back around to see what was happening I couldn't find Petite-Homme, but I could see one of the boys coming back to school, cautiously, looking down further I found Petite-Homme, crouched behind the wall back inside the gate, waiting for the boys to come back. The one boy that came back, took one quick look and ran as fast as he could in the direction his friend went. It took me a while to compose my self again from laughing so hard, and good thing lunch arrived, cause I was not able to get my class to calm down. Wish I had my camera to capture the moment.

Moral? Every one has a Petite-Homme story, and never mess with a man with a ruler, or tell a blanc they smell like poo. 

Monday, March 21, 2011

Things I've learned so far...#4

  • Haitian kids would rather do work, then a fun project at school
  • dust+wind= not good
  • as soon as you sweep the house its dusty not even two seconds later
  • Haitians know how to really worship in church
  • That my former flip flop tan lines no longer exist, but are now permanent dirt lines
  • I dont expect clean feet till at least september due to extended flip flop season
  • Goat is actually pretty good when done right
  • Stock up during elections because you never know what is going to happen
  • watching Olivier copying the Lululemon yoga poses off of facebook, provides a good hour of entertainment
  • Junior can make anything grow, even water mellon seeds.
  • Kids can make make a toy car out of a drink bottle, bottle caps, and lollipop sticks
  • most kids are garbage pickers
  • And last but not least, NEVER GO TO THE MEAT MARKET!! ( have yet to repeat it since the last time I mentioned it)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

some cute kids for you


Update for Jan/Feb

Hello everyone! 

Wow! Its been a long time since I've done an email update, and a blog post. But life here has been busy like it always is. School is busy with students eager to learn, not only about their lessons but God as well. The kids at the orphanage are thriving, and are full of life as always, and wanting to love. We've also gone though some changes at school with our american principal going back to the states, and having a Haitian take over the school, its great seeing the changes that are coming with that and his dedication to the school and the students. The new principal hasn't really affected my building and my job, now him and I work together keeping the three buildings in sync. 

This past February, I got to witness some things I never dreamed of seeing in my life, which have opened my eyes. A pastor from Port-au-Prince came to St. Marc to have a crusade, wanting to free people from their misery I guess is a good way to put it. It lasted two weeks and things were brought out in the open about spiritual issues here in Haiti. Please keep and open mind when reading about this. Every one knows that voodoo is a big part of Haiti, pretty much all Haitians participate in it, even if they are "members" of the church, even the pastors do. And because of this no one will give you a straight answer about it, when you ask them. And a big part of the voodoo culture here is being demon possessed, and zombies. Its hard to describe this stuff, to you, because we are all ignorant to this stuff, it even happens back home, and we just don't realize it. Let me explain what a zombie is, with the best of my understanding. A zombie isn't like what we see in Hollywood, its really a soul of a dead person that has taken up residence in some one's body. It is put in the other person's body by a witch doctor, I'm not sure how as I have heard several stories how it is done. The main story I have heard is with a mixture that includes poison of a puffer fish. So, it isn't really what we picture  zombie to be like, they look just like you and I, and are walking all over Haiti, acting like a normal, for the most part. And there is a way to get the soul of the zombie out of a person, but its scary, messy and hard work. The kind of work the churches don't want to deal with. Also it is time consuming, as some times they can have more than one soul inside them. But this pastor that came for two weeks, was willing to do it. Every night there was close to 10,000 people that came out carrying their lawn chairs, for worship, a sermon, and deliverance. People would bring their loved ones that they wanted set free to the crusade. In front of the stage, there was a roped off area with tarps on the ground, ready with pastors, and security guards. Here is where they brought the possessed. It was like looking into the pit of hell. There was shrieking, wailing and moaning coming from there. The spirit would cause them to run, and be vicious, their hands and feet would be bound together with strips of cloth, and they be rolling around wanting to be free. There would be fighting and hair pulling. It was mostly young women, little girls and teenagers, that had gone to the witch doctor wanting something, or their parents taking them there wanting protection for them. As I said it was like looking into hell. But people were healed and saved, and delivered. One girl had over 1000 demon spirits that they casted out of her, another was a zombie, that they set the soul free, then she could see her family's faces, she could pick out the facial features of any other person, but not her family and friends, she thought their thumb was their nose. Also I witnessed a crippled lady walk that should never have been able, even if she was in Canada or the States. It was amazing to witness. 
In other news we have a new addition to the orphanage. A sweet 2 months old baby named Dyouna pronounced Juna. She is an amazing baby and hardly cries. But her favourite thing to do is spit up on me and only me. All the kids are doing great there, and I love spending Friday afternoons with them, just loving and playing with them, and going for walks. 

Well thats about is for now,Its Karnival time this weekend, which is Haiti's version of Mardi Gras, so it's going to be nice and loud all weekend, with every one blaring their music as loud as they can. 

I leave you with some more pictures of nice warm Haiti to make up for the snow every one is getting

Love Crystal