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Published: January 31st 2007
Annie on the Baraderes river
It’s already the end of January 2007… it has been eight weeks that we have now been in Haiti., and we are still going strong… As you can see from the sporadic updates, the internet connections are always proving to be a great challenge here, we even have a internet connection via Haitel (local cellular phone company) using their cellular network, but this is still not working in places we seem to be. In result we are not always able to update everything, but when we find internet service, we do our best to update all.. Other than that, Annie & I are doing fine and our Creole is getting better by the day, allowing us to communicate in far less of a side show manner, as in the past weeks here. So far this year, we have not done as much sailing to new places as we would have liked, but we are learning much here and we are always up to something interesting,.. We have made plans to fly home on the February 14th for a short visit with family and friends.
Since our last update, we have been doing our best to see as much as possible
on sea and land. We were able to visit the city of Kesscoff and have been driving around in a loaned four wheel drive a Daihatsu Rocky!!..
Last Friday, with everyone aboard, including an official from Canada, we set sail at 8:am headed to round the west end of Ile de la Gonave towards the Baie des Baraderes. We arrived just before 3 pm the same day, with the crossing being very calm one. As soon as we set our anchor for the night, location (Waypoint 18º38’160N 073º38’835W) just in front of the small village of Bria, we were quickly greeted by locals in there BOIS FOUILLIS, with familiar faces seen on our last visit here. One of them being the local Casec (town elected chief), Mr, Protege Vilme. For anyone that knows him, he has a smile from ear to ear all the time… After his strong persuasion we followed him to shore to be greeted by many other familiar faces.. Since the sun was setting behind the mountains and it was soon to be dark, we only stayed for a short time before heading back aboard…
Next morning, during the early morning hours, we board our
skiff and took a ride back to the village of Baraderes, after some five and a half weeks since we last visited this hidden place. Some of our group took a one hour hike with a local guide to town and the rest took the very scenic route up the river by skiff. Since it was Saturday, their central market was in full force, selling everything from live chickens, fruit and vegetables, wild rice, clothing to so many other things. Spending a good part of the day there we all started our long journey back to the boat by late afternoon.
During late afternoon, we headed for the shore line of Bria. Once on shore we were again greeted by the awaiting villagers. This time we had a great surprise for them. We had three large bags of clothes and shoes for these villagers, as Yanick was kind enough to donate these needed clothes to them. We also had other great news for them as Tony has donated corrugated steel to cover the school’s roof. These villagers where so thrilled by all. Especially since this was the first time anyone had ever come to help them. We aren’t sure,
but we think that many have never seen a white man here before. During our short time ashore were invited to their hill top school, where all the young villagers (school kids) came dressed in there best school clothes. We took many pictures of them (seen here) as they all lined in the front of the class. Doing our best with our best Creole and using their chalkboard, we tried to explain were we come from through drawings of maps to show the distance and locations between Haiti and Canada. For them (from what they had heard), Canada is a place of paradise in their mind, but they looked quite stunned at us when we tried to explain that there is snow on the ground at this same moment!! . Please take a look at the not so clear video but the sound of them singing made it well worth viewing. It will melt your heart as it did ours. We took many pictures of the mothers and their young children, and next time we go there we will bring printed copies for them to keep. As everyone knows Annie & I are not here in Haiti for humanitarian purposes,
but as you live here for a short time, it is so very hard just to ignore these people’s needs. We are just making such a small change and it makes a world of difference for these people. . .
Before we headed back to our skiff, we asked the children for their wish list for when we would return. The children rang out with requests such as a soccer ball, toy cars and trucks, any toys, and one ingenuous little boy rang out with a smile ear to ear ,, that he would like a wrist watch and a ring! In return the adult villagers laughed and asked him…. TI MOUN (little boy), who do you intend on marring with such gifts!! .. As you can imagine, we will surely have a soccer ball for them when we return and hope to collect as many toys as possible for them…
The Village of Bria, with census taken during our stay, resulted in 107 children and 114 adults. This tiny village, still to this day, have no electricity, no running water, just each other to depend on..
On Sunday morning we sadly weighed anchor as the villagers’
lined the shore waving to us and wishing us a safe journey, as we set sail for Montrouis, Haiti.
Please keep sharing your comments; it is so very encouraging for us.
Cheers to you all,
Annie & Eric
In Haiti When you have a chance, take a look at our web site www.WeBeSailing.com we have some new additions and we have had the chance to update some of the older parts. Also Annie recipe of the month should be updated in a few days,,
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