West Tennessee Haiti Partnership

CBU nurses in Haiti Day 2

Yesterday when Chloe provided our group orientation she said “not to worry, we will always have electricity.” She went on to explain that the local electric company rotates the electric power in zones throughout the city but the guest house has a generator and we will have fans and lights; use the green receptacle. At 5:15 Marie woke up saying “the power went out – the fans are off.” What Chloe should have said was we always have electricity – except when we do not. It appears all bedrooms do not have the green receptacle and someone must be present to turn on the generator. We had lights about 6 AM when the cook came in for the day.

August, our bus driver arrived promptly at 8:00 and also, promptly informed me he had an appointment at 2 P.M and we could not go to lunch today. Once we got to church several of the seats and pews in the back were already full. Thus, we had to sit about 5 to 8 pews from the back. As the church filled up, there was an older 60’s woman sitting almost at the end of the pew with her purse beside her (lady#1). Another really older lady 80’s (lady #2), which I recognized as one of the women from the nursing home we visit, came in and wanted the end seat. Well, older lady #1moved her purse and took the end seat. Lady #2 got a bit pushy trying to get the end seat, lady #1 was not about to give up her seat at the end. I long stare down in sued – lady #1 won. Lady #2 was not too  happy and had a few words for lady #1. I would have liked to have heard what was said but their non-verbal communication said a great deal. I pointed this out to Marie and Tiffany and we chuckled. I guess everyone likes the end of the pew, which by the way I had in my pew at the other end. 

There were 4 infants baptized in church today. It was very sweet. Right before the baptism began the power went out. I looked at Marie sitting next to me and said, “we always have power, except when we do not.”  It was a long 15 minutes before the fans began working again.

John Robert got us into the Holy Trinity gift shop. As usual, we found little treasures to bring home to friends and family. Suzanne picked out a beautiful hand carved and painted oval wooden bowl for 500 gourdes – $11.00. There was a gorgeous table cloth with hand stitched poinsettias around the edges. I did not buy it since I did not bring enough money to church. Marie on the other-hand has her eye on a leather purse, she did not purchase either for the same reason. 

Sr. Margaret and the other Sisters were so pleased to see us at church and receive us at Notre Dame de Foyer (aka nursing home). The Srs. introduced us to BeBe, their new 85 year-old resident, who they described as “a hand-full”. Let me assure you from what we saw and heard that may be a gross understatement. She started singing and dancing and motioned for us to join her – I did. Hey, I can twist with an 85 year-old woman any day. This sweet heart wanted her picture taken with Tiffany. We do not know why but she decided she wanted her picture taken with Tiffany, our only African- American student this semester. 
We brought a small bag of suckers  and passed them out to the ladies. I open one and put it to the lips of a frail little wheelchair dependent lady. If you want the definition of “priceless” it would be the response of this lady, ah! and the biggest smile and licking her lips! Happiness with what we call a dum-dum sucker. 

We did not have lunch because August had his appointment but we have made arrangements with Chloe to go to the Montana Hotel at 3:30 for the view and cocktails. …. to be continued.

At 330 we took off to the Montana Hotel. The very best hotel in Haiti with a vista that overlooks the whole of the city; ocean, refinery, airport, and every district within the city. It was majestic! Welcome home Dr. Bredy. We had numerous photo opportunities for the team with and without faculty. Hopefully Denise has these posted on her Facebook page and all of the other team member. 

I told Sr. Margaret about Dr. Bredy returning to Haiti for the first time in 4 decades. Sr. asked if she had family in Haiti. I explained other than her children in Memphis she did not have any family. Sr. said – “we the sisters will be her family from now on” and as we were ready to leave she told this to Marie. Tiffany took a picture of Marie and her new family, the Sisters. It was a very moving and beautiful moment.

We heard the story of how Gail came to live in Haiti since 2007 and all of the unbelievable work she has done with Healing Hands over the last 7 years. As a rehab nurse for over 20 years, she has made a huge contribution to the well being and health of the people in Haiti. Hats off to Gail!!!!

We then had a Generous Listening experience as Dr. Bredy told her story. She spoke of her childhood in Haiti —to survival in America and life and dreams in Memphis. Hats off to Dr. Bredy. 

We enjoyed our time on the mountain at the Montana, great dinner and a Prestige on the porch chatting and visiting and feeling the cool of the rain.

John Robert told me we cannot take the children through the streets; thus clinic will be in the library and large classroom. I kept asking if we had the scale – of course was the answer. Tomorrow promises to be a mystery, an adventure and probably a complete surprise. Dr. Bredy wanted to know what she is to do tomorrow. I looked at Heather and told her, “ we will let you know as soon as we figure out what we are doing.” At this juncture I am relying on my saying. God never puts me where He does not want me to be! Thank you God!!

                                                                                                                                                                   Evelyn Sue Trzynka
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