Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Road trip!

By Mike: Today I took a road trip to the mission's orphanage in Port-de-Paix. It is about 12 miles away, but the trip can take anywhere from 45 to 90 minutes, depending on traffic (in the form of trucks, motorcycles, bikes, and donkeys), road conditions, and other factors. There were about 15-20 of us who piled into the back of a pickup truck and headed off. These trucks are known as "tap-taps" in Haiti. They serve as Haitian buses/taxis to transport people and are known as tap-taps because people tap the side of them if they want to get off. Anyway, eventually we reached the mission's orphanage. They are currently housing approximately 120-130 orphans there, which is pretty much capacity for them. Few of these kids are true orphans, some have one parent who have died, and others just have parents who are unable to care for them. There is an American couple who is in charge of the orphanage, and then there are five Haitian families who live there, each of which is responsible for about 25-30 children. We went to the orphanage and I got involved in a soccer game of 4 Americans vs. 4 Haitian children. Our goals were wooden benches that were maybe about 2 feet wide, barely big enough for the ball to fit through. Even so, I managed to score a couple goals. And then, I got the ball in the open field (or I should say "open gravel"), made a sweet move and completely juked a 5 year old boy, went to kick the ball, slipped and as I was falling, still managed to kick the ball, it was kind of a sideways bicycle kick, just missed the goal from about 30 feet out. Unfortunately, I skidded across the gravel and cut up my knee and my elbow. I was bleeding pretty badly, so they took me to the nurse's office and I got bandaged up. After that, we took the children to the beach to go swimming. Saying beach makes it sound like a nice place, but the beach is really pretty nasty. There's a lot of garbage lying around, a couple pigs just laying around, but the kids still have a good time there. The water is really beautiful once you get out a few feet. Since I was heavily bandaged, I was not able to swim, but just watched the kids enjoying themselves. Then we took the kids back, hung out for a little while, and headed back home to the mission. I enjoyed the experience and I definitely hope to bring our LCA team back to this orphanage on our trip next summer.

While I was gone, Becky hung out with Kerwin. One of the ladies on the trip is a physical therapist, so she worked with Kerwin today and showed Becky some stretches we can be doing with him to loosen up his muscles. After supper tonight, Kerwin scrounged through a supply closet where they keep extra toys (he does this fairly regularly) and found a pack of what were labeled "rocket balloons". Basically, you blow them up, then let go, and they fly around like crazy. Needless to say, he had a fun evening!

Hope everyone is doing well and we would like to hear from anyone who has been reading this and know how your summers are going!


Don and Karen said...

Hey you guys,

Little spotty showers yesterday but bright an sunny today. Little cooler in the low 80's. Moderate drought in our area. Lots of counties not allowed to water.

We are getting ready to head to Hawaii on vacation. So will have lots of reading to catch up on when we return on July 7. I'm praying for the adoption process to complete and all the barriers are removed. You guys need to get back home and get settled in your own home. Sounds like things are going well for you all with a few ups and downs here and there. That is to be expected. I like reading how you are so involved in the whole area and with all the people. Mike has done his scouting for LCA and Kerwin is making some PT strides. Very good.

Hope Mike's sport injuries are healing well. The church softball team won their first tourny game last week against WFM. If the first game is won on Thursday, they will play for the championship right after. We will see how it goes. It has been hard for Don to get players there. He had to start with 9 players until a player he had to call to come showed up. The week before, while Don was in India, they played with 9 players. Don't know what's going on. Makes coaching difficult.

Anyway, take care of yourselves. You are in our prayers.

Love ya

Anonymous said...

We sat and watched it rain yesterday and it was wonderful! Wish it rained all night but it didn't. Jordan has a double header tonight at Cardinal Run against the Bulldogs. (Mostly Dunbar girls) She has a job this summer, babysitting Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Keeps her busy and puts change in her pockets.

Take care! --Dinah

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to let you know that we made it to PA safely. We are about to go out for dinner with Grandmother and Papa. We will write more later.


Dad said...

Not much going on but wanted to send this note. Max has settled in and we're good for three our four walks around the neighborhood a day. I'll be here until next Tuesday, so we should be able to get out several times a day. Mom is back to work tomorrow, she's been off for almost two weeks, so it's me and Max most of the next couple of days. I'll make him do my report at my Carfax meeting tomorrow (he's probably better at this than I am). I don't think Mom mentioned this, we went to Chris and Jenny Brown's wedding Friday. It was nice. If Jenny Brown sounds familar, there are now three of them. Rob's wife is Jenny and Rob and Chris' sister is a Jenny. The guys said they are renaming them Ace, Duece, and Trey, but I don't think that's going over well. Bob and Joyce asked us to sit at their table which was nice and gave us a change to catch up on things. I've been trying to get Bob to join us for our Saturday night game, maybe this will help.

Keep sending you notes.
Love, Dad.