Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Haiti - Day 1 - Travel Day

I have different sections of each day so I'll post a section at a time. I've also added in some thoughts here and there in parentheses to expand on what I had written at the time. I hope this gives you a better viewpoint of our experience in Haiti.

Day 1 - Travel Day

Leaving US, Arriving Ayiti (Haiti)
We left the church house @ 3:45 a.m. and headed to the airport. Scott Sparks drove the church van and the attached trailer. He looked like he hadn't been up at 3:45 a.m. in a long time, lol... We didn't have heat until Brian Lloyd broke out some type of pliers to turn the control over to warm. I should have known that this was a precursor of things to come from him in Haiti. At the airport we loaded up 26 people, 52 LARGE checked bags, and just as many carry-ons onto the plane. From there to Dallas, from Dallas to Miami (whose airport has a lot to live for), from Miami to Port-Au-Prince. I should have known when the plane took a tight 180 degree turn for landing and then landed hard and fast it would be an omen for the next few hours. We deboarded and headed for immigration where I met a missionary couple from Canada who was staying for three weeks.

(At the time, I thought I wish I could stay that long but I remembered that thought on the back of a covered open air truck for the ride back to the airport to head home and cringed at the thought of staying two more weeks. I couldn't do it emotionally. I was spent. Little did I know that my dad was going to die this day and the emotional rollercoster was waiting to take me for a few more rides against my will.)

Once through immigration we began gathering our bags. Unbelievably, all 52 made it. Unfortunately, one of the ladies in our group left her carry-on bag on the plane and the airport personnel would not allow her to retrieve it. She had a mild panic attack that was ultimately soothed by the bag's return through our persistent efforts. Strangely enough, while we were gathering bags, hunting bags, begging for a carry-on bag the few people that were left and the airport workers, in cognizant to us, stared at televisions in the baggage claim area at some soccer game being played in a far off land. It wasn't much different than if the NFL was on at an airport in the US.

Next: Leaving the Airport

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You are so nice; "one of the ladies" IT WAS TERRI BEELER. I don't think I have seen her have a "Mild Panic Attack". Thanks RB