Today we returned to Leveque to begin our first day of work. We started the morning eager to return to the village and to take our first ride in a taptap! (A small carrier truck with the roof removed and instead of hauling items, it hauls us!) The ride is a blast, bouncing down the roads and seeing more and more of Haiti. However, you must be mindful of the tree branches. Some of us got up close and personal with those!
When we arrived in Leveque, we loaded the taptap with painting supplies for the houses. It was especially exciting for the returners in our group to see how much progress had been made since they came the last time and to see people living in the homes they had helped paint.
We knocked out two houses (painting the exteriors) in the morning. One house is a bright blue, the other hunter green. Many of the village’s children were excited to see us and wanted to help too. It was an added bonus to spend time with them.
We took a break for lunch and headed over to Mission of Hope’s second campus, Bercy. We were able to reflect on the morning work and share sandwiches with some other crew members. Sharing our experiences with each other made them that much better.
The afternoon shift of painting took us a bit longer to complete as we were now painting the houses cream and yellow. Needless to say there are more than a few coats on those houses. It was all wonderful, though, because it gave us extra time to play with the kids!
The kids were a blast and incredibly loving. They were little bundles of joy and so excited to be with us. Just spending time with them brought them and us so much joy! They love taking pictures and wearing our sunglasses and hats. It was a big change for us to interact with them because they acted so differently from children in the United States-who definitely do not run into the arms of complete strangers just to hug and love you. We loved every minute of today and cannot wait to return tomorrow.