The internet has not been very reliable, so I have not been able to post this week. Class is going very well. We finished Range of Motion today, and the students will have their written and practical tests tomorrow. They have really come together as a cohesive class! They love hands-on labs, and the men have been willing to take off their shirts for scapula motions. They are all very professional. There is quite a bit of excitement regarding the return of “Baby Doc” to Port a Prince. A few of the students feel he should be arrested, since he took so much of the Haitian treasury with him when he left. One student expressed concern, warning that when he was in power, talking against him would result in getting beat up or killed. Another student explained that it did not matter who was elected, nothing would ever change. This statement caused several of the students to get very excited, exclaiming it is every Haitians responsibility to vote, a those that do not vote should be put in jail!! The students felt that Aristead was a nice man and he should be able to return to Haiti, but not be in politics again. All the students thought Barak Obama was a great American President, but expressed concern for him. We did find out later today that Baby Doc was arrested after university students demanded his arrest. Another rumor is that he has announced that he is dying and has returned to Haiti for that reason and will not be involved in politics. We shall see.
Several people have asked questions about are daily schedule and food etc. So I will outline a day in Deschapelles.
3:30 am The public bus stops in Deschapelles on the way to Port au Prince. It is a large bus, and usually sounds a horn. If you have a room in the front of the house, it sometimes sounds like the bus is backing up into your room.
5:00 am People begin to start walking to work, or market or wherever. The roosters begin to reach their crescendo
6:00 am The water comes on from 6-7, so it is time to get up and get a shower if you want a morning shower. Yes, we only have cold water. You can heat up some warm water if you prefer to shower out of a bucket. Edith arrives to make breakfast and to start the laundry while she has water.
Breakfast is usually juice, coffee, toast, and fruit. Peanut butter is available. Today we had a wonderful pepper omelet (very spicy). Occasionally there are fantastic pancakes! Oh I almost forgot, the buile (boolay) a hot cereal, kind of nutty, kind of corny, kind of wheaty, etc (not my favorite, you may guess) Edith does not usually make it while I am here because she knows I don’t like it.
6:50 to 7:00 am On the way to the Hospital, you are often greeted by several people who are trying to sell you something or simply hoping for a handout. This will occur again all day long as you travel from the house to the hospital. I sometimes wonder if I have a GPS chip since everyone finds me so quickly, however I do stand out!!
7:00 am Morning Medical Meeting. All medical staff and visitors meet in the library to report on 24 hour admissions, and for a short educational inservice. This is followed by both medical and surgical patient rounds.
8:30 RTTP class begins if you are a teacher. As mentioned earlier we are starting each day with Tai Chi. The students have learned to love it. We are hoping they will teach the next teachers and hoping others will add new movements.
12:00 – 1:00 is for lunch. Usually the largest meal of the day. Today we had fried chicken legs, rice/beans and Creole sauce (onions, with some tomatoes and spice). Yesterday we had a very interesting pasta dish. Pickli (spicy cabbage, carrots with vinegar) is available at every lunch and dinner). Also fresh squeezed fruit juice (unsweetened) so it is very refreshing. Water is on from 12:00 to 1:00 so a good time to shower if you missed the morning water.
1:00-3:30 back to class, it already is warm in the afternoon so it gets difficult for students to concentrate, and they prefer labs in the afternoon.
3:30- 6:00 Free time to nap, check email, exercise, go to market, work on curriculum, visit, read etc
6:00 Water is back on from 6-7, so if you want an evening shower this is your chance. Prestige time (Haitian beer) followed by dinner. Edith leaves a cooked dinner. Tonight is a wonderful pizza with some type of ground meat. Another favorite is goat meat. No seafood this year due to the cholera epidemic.
7:30-8:00 we do the dinner dishes, have another beer or on a rare occasion a glass of wine.
8:00-10:00 Reading or games. Preparation for teaching. Going to visit at another house or going to library to check email
10:00 Everyone in this house is usually in bed.
11:00 The music from the soda/beer stand in the station is usually at a peak
3:30 The bus to Port a Prince has arrived again……..
RTTP Class 2011
Front row: Willien, John, Souz Second row: Frantzo, Nahoum (translator), Edner, Gerthie, Mr. Chuck
Madam Toni instructing students in ROM
Gertie doing ROM with Willien