On Thursday morning the guys on the mission team woke up to some crispy bacon for breakfast. To be honest, it was WAY too crispy. Our host got distracted and burned part of it. Though it would have been easy to complain, none of the guys did. After several days in Haiti it is clear that many people in this island nation do not get to eat the way we Americans eat. Very few get three meals a day and most would rejoice to have our crispy bacon. So the guys munched away at it without complaint (though one or two did recall what our security guard had told us about his odd eating habits and wondering if there were any cats are missing in the village that day!)
We spent most of the day burning large piles of rubbish. Haitians tend to throw all their trash on the ground since no one has taught them otherwise. We had collected up a lot of trash from around the compound and added it to the pile of scrap lumber and other construction debris. Since there are no town dumps to dispose of these items properly, and no one in Haiti has ever heard of recycling, the orphanage has no choice but to burn the trash, including plastic bottles and broken plastic tables and other similar items. Most of the stuff we burned would NEVER have been burned in America. The black smoke rolled upward most of the day and we were sure we created a hole in the ozone layer above the compound. But when we were finished, the entire area was clear of all the debris and everything was sorted and ready for the next round of construction, which begins August 1.
Some of the mission team painted the trim on three of the new toddler houses that will eventually house orphans. Some of the team assembled two basketball goals that will get put up when the playground is complete. Some of the team rejuvenated a lovely garden that had gotten severely overgrown with weeds. When they got finished, it did not even look like the same space. In a facility like this, there is a never ending list of things to do and we were glad to serve the Lord be checking several items off that list.
In the evening, the mission team enjoyed a hotdog cookout for dinner and once again we thought about how well we were eating and how poorly those around us normally eat. This experience has made several us very “food” conscious as we watch our seemingly ever expanding waistlines. If there is one thing we have learned on this trip, it is that most Americans are very spoiled and do not even know it. Perhaps that is one of the lessons God wanted us to learn on this trip.