Tuesday, March 13, 2012
The meeting with the town Mayor went well. There were a total of three meetings that Steve Jones, Jeff Ashlock and I were part of. The final one was, for me, the most interesting and cool one. It was held in the Mayor's office and cool soft drinks were served in the traditional recycled glass bottles. Bottles aren't melted down and made into new containers in Haiti, they are washed at the factory and reused.
This last meeting was with all the town officials, secretary, treasurer, water council, and Mayor. After they made a formal acceptance of the plans and offer of assistance, we were given a tour of the Mayor's office. It was run on a solar power system and was quite spartan. There was a locked shipping container in the back, donated by the European Union to be used in case of a natural disaster. It had a communications system, rations, and medical equipment. The mayor was very proud of his post and his town. He is a very nice man!
Yesterday, I received the drawn up plans for the new system. I put my two cents in and reflected on the last few months. None of this would have happened without action. Stuff of this magnitude requires sacrifice, hard work, and determination. I couldn't have done any of this without my wife's love, patience, and hard work.
The money donated was incredible. I believe in the kindness of the human spirit. Another couple of thoughts that are constant mantras in the back of my head are:
-"God loves these people more than I ever could."
-"The answer is always "No" until you ask." (Thanks Mike!)
A couple of neat observations:
-The Save the Children clinic (which serve the entire community regardless of age) has a huge covered area with supplies that are for treating Cholera. There are fewer and fewer instances of this disease showing itself nowadays!
-The road from Port au Prince to one town from Maissade is paved! The president of Haiti visited that town (Hinche) and told the people that it will be completed all the way to Cap Haitien in the north. This means that the road may be paved all the way to Maissade and beyond by the time I get there next year!
-There is 3G wireless access in Maissade. I hope that this will bring about a change as far as communication so needs can be met on a more specific basis. I have already had facebook chats with some of my friends there and we have discussed the water system and did a little troubleshooting.
-May (my daughter) was impressed by the level of math these kids were doing. We stopped at an outdoor school at the edge of the town and they were doing everything on a chalkboard that May was doing in High School algebra. She was also impressed by the bi- and tri-lingual kids she met.
This is all for now. I will keep you all updated on the progress of the town well that should be drilled in the next week or two. The town is to buld the support columns and wall around it, the generator room, etc, in anticipation for the final team to come in June to complete it.
Praise God that the whole town will have access to clean water by June!!