Within the first ten minutes of my visit in Dufailly with the Fleur De Vie, I was in tears. I didn’t know where they came from, but they invaded my face, and I could not hold them back. Not many people get to see me cry, and I’m one of those people who cry more from happiness than sadness and frustration the older I get. I’m so glad we decided to include Dufailly as part of our service schedule. Our trip was planned around a big recreational day for six schools in Port-au-Prince- where we provided school supplies and health screenings to all of their students. The day before, we spent all day organizing backpacks, about over 700 of them.
When we finally reached Dufailly after an eventful and intimidating trip from Port-au-Prince, I couldn’t retain my excitement. As soon as I saw the colorful signs welcoming us as the children sat patiently waiting for us, my emotions took over. I started sniffing and choking as soon as they started singing, “Bienvenueeeeeee!” (Welcome!!!) I looked all of their beautiful faces- all different ages, full of innocence. Their almond eyes painted with dreams. And their lips of happiness. They didn’t know me, but they were welcoming me with open arms.
I spotted Azou, the older lady in the photo above, and told her how beautiful she was. She graciously thanked me and allowed me to photograph her. I said the same thing to the little girl I was holding, and she denied my compliments. She argued with me that she was not beautiful, and that devastated me. She was as sharp as a nail that one. She spoke the loudest out of all of them, and was the least shy. She didn’t mind telling me her name while looking at me in the eyes, while the other ones just looked down and smiled when I asked them. We played Simon Said and Tonton Bouki (A Haitian version of Simon Said where you sing and dance). We laughed like old friends, and when I was leaving, and group of little girls held my arm all at once. I loved the girls from Dufailly, Haiti, and I hope to see them again.
Stay tuned for more Haiti posts!