The hurricane preparation continues. The outlook is now better than what was expected earlier in the week- the storm is now more likely to pass between Haiti and Jamaica rather than a direct hit on Haiti. That being said, we are all but sure to have heavy rains. Leogane is particularly prone to flooding; in past heavy rain events, it is not during the rainfall but afterwards when deaths occur in the low lying and more impoverished parts of town.
Today I went with a fellow All-Hands’er to meet with a community where we are considering building a school. After discussing with the 45 attendees what kind of commitment we require from the community to proceed with construction, and explaining the particulars of the schools we build, we chatted about Hurricane Tomas. They appreciated the up-to-date information we were able to provide because the average Haitian can’t exactly hop onto the web to look at a flashy animation of the rapidly evolving conditions. Rather, word-of-mouth news networks (aka rumours) take precedent. We fielded questions from the community which simply stunned me. Is the hurricane supposed to hit this week or next? What do we do when the tsunami washes in? Would our families be safer to hunker down in the tarp-and-tin post-earthquake shelters, or the cracked up concrete block structures we vacated after the earthquake? Will YOU bring us food in the weeks following flooding where the farms and markets are defunct? While this sense of oblivion left me very worried and scared for all these vulnerable folks, they generally left the meeting shrugging their shoulders, unstirred because they are faced with little option.
On the lighter side, here are a couple of pics I snapped when I slumbered out of my tent this morning.