Monday came, and we heard there was going to be protesting going on, but we didn’t worry to much about it. Until we heard of multiple people that tried to go somewhere and couldn’t because of roadblocks. Harold was supposed to be having devotions out at the school, so we planned to go along. After hearing different reports, he called the school, and the school was closed for the day. That was when I started to get concerned that we wouldn’t make it to the airport. And I was ready to come home, and see my family 🙂
Now, for the rest of the story 🙂 We were planning to leave around 11:30 because our flight left at 2:00p.m. Sherita put a casserole in the oven, we played with the girls at their recess, and packed up. I don’t even remember what time it was when Soney (pretty sure I’m spelling wrong :)), came back from checking things out on the road. Soney was going to drive us to the airport. He lives at the mission in another building, and is a nice, quiet man. Anyways, he came back and said he thinks he can get us to the airport, but we must leave now. I have to confess, I was a bundle of nerves. After quick, tearful goodbyes we were off. Sherita threw some food in a bag for us. I ate a bit. I wasn’t very hungry 🙂
When we started out, we didn’t see anything out of the ordinary. Soney took us a totally different route. There were 4 of us all stuffed in the back seat. Harold was in the front between Soney and John Harold, who also decided to ride along. They didn’t want anyone on the back in case of trouble. We’d heard reports of rocks being thrown, fires, and even some with guns. As we bumped and jarred our way along, I prayed like crazy for safety 🙂 We started coming up on this hill, that when you looked down, you could see a river bed with a bit of water running through it. I’m thinking we are going out around, until Soney makes the turn, and starts driving towards it. I wasn’t the only worried one 🙂 Harold told him he really doesn’t want to get stuck in the mud and water. Soney just smiled. I was thinking, “This guy is not thinking! We are going to sink, get stuck, etc.” But nope, we kept on going. There was another missionary couple that had come into town on Sunday evening because of the protests, Elwood and Anita Martin, and they decided to follow us to the airport. I was sure they were not going to attempt crossing a river in their van, but they did 🙂 They’ve been in Haiti for quite awhile, it probably didn’t even scare them 🙂 While we were driving through the river bed, we came to the 1st road block. A measly row of tires across, blocking the way. Soney spoke to the men, and they kindly moved them. Coming up out of the river bed, it was fairly steep, and we saw a group of men, and big rocks across the road. Soney puts his head out the window, and they are talking back and forth. More like yelling, I thought 🙂 And then John Harold talking loudly, lots of arm movements. And they are motioning, hurry up, hurry up, and start moving the rocks. Now I might add, none of them looked happy about it. And one fellow in particular sticks in my memory. He planted himself directly in front of the truck, waving his arms, yelling, and glaring. He did NOT want us going through. More yelling, lots of praying, and we went through, much to his unhappiness. I guess there were enough other men that were willing to let us pass, that they overrode him. That, and the hand of Almighty God.
Well, we made it through that, and then the truck started acting up 🙂 Something with the 4 wheel drive they thought. We’d go a bit, then lurch to a stop. It sounded like something was dragging. We kept going for awhile like that, until we really came to a stop 🙂 Like jerked to a stop. There were people in the street laughing at us, it was that bad 🙂 So we stopped, threw our bags into Elwood and Anita’s vehicle, and they took us the rest of the way to the airport. They truly were a Godsend. God knew why He put it into their hearts to follow us!
We made it into the airport, kindly refusing the offers to help us, and moved to check in our baggage. A man in an orange vest grabbed our suitcases, put them in a separate lane, and motioned us to where we should go. More on him later. To make a long story shorter, the computers were having issues, we waited and waited, seeing that our plane was boarding. Finally, we could tell the line was moving, but before we knew it, another line was open, and a bunch of the people behind us started being checked through before us. A man we were talking with, wasn’t standing for that. He made sure he told them that is not ok 🙂 We got checked through, and our man in the orange vest was motioning us, hurry, hurry! And we were worried about missing the flight. Then we get to the line where we were to be in, and Mr. Orange Vest holds out his hand for money. You would have thought we would have known better, right when he grabbed our bags, but the orange vest made us think he was with the airport. Wrong 🙂 Well I had literally spent and gave every last dollar away that I had with me. And we were in a hurry. And Burneil and Mindy had a $20. So they gave him that and asked for change. He pulls out a $5. Yes, they said, and one more $5. He opens his wallet, saying, “No more.” Needless to say, as we walked away, I looked back and he was grinning like a bandit 🙂 So now you know, watch out for those orange vested guys too, besides all the others 🙂
They checked us more thoroughly when we left Haiti, than they did in New York. Our personal bags were checked, and we were all patted down. And finally in the plane, and ready for take off.
Our flight home was good. They did warn us of turbulence when we were descending into New York , because the weather wasn’t nice. I was glad they warned us, or I may have thought we were going down 🙂 I got a bit sick from that, but no puking, so that was good. I do remember praying, “God, just please get me on the ground!” 🙂 After we landed, we had to wait a bit in the plane, something with the weather or snow. Then they told us our flight was very close to being diverted to Philadelphia because of the weather issues. You can imagine our relief that that wasn’t what transpired! Do you see why it seemed like one thing after another kept happening, but it always worked out? That was the prayers of you, of church family, of friends, of family, that brought us home!
When we walked out of the plane, the pilot said, “Welcome to reality :)” That reality hitting us in the face in the form of wind, and cold, and did I say wind & cold?? 🙂 It was one tired and happy lady that walked in the door late that night, to be welcomed with a hug from the man I love, and balloons and a note for me from the children. Home never felt so good 🙂 And as I peeked into my children’s sleeping faces, I thanked God for bringing me home to my family. And I slept good that night 🙂
* A side note on the mother of the twins. I couldn’t remember her name. It is Mirlonde. She was ill from tuberculosis, and didn’t seem to be making improvement. Anita Martin, that I talked about in this post, works as a nurse down there, and she told us about a hospital that helps TB patients. Anyways, I am happy to tell you, Harolds took Mirlonde there, and she will have to be there for a bit without her family, but she is getting stronger. I am so happy for her! It pained me to see her so thin and unable to care for those sweet babies. Sherita told me they went to visit her, and took the twins and the rest of her family to see her, and she said she reached for her babies right away. I know she must really miss her family while she is there, so continue to pray for her healing.
And if you want to see my sisters post from when we were there, just click on the link under the blogs I follow. It’s Living 4 Him.
May God bless each of you!