What an amazing, exhausting day! It all started out as usual, but we got a big surprise right after lunch … the 30Abes food was finally coming to Maison! There is a somewhat long story behind all this, so I’ll try to make it quick:
Back in September, there was this awesome food packing event in Nashville called 30Abes. The goal was to pack meals for an orphanage in Haiti (Maison des Enfants de Dieu) and set a world record in the process – we succeeded. Yes, we! Our family, along with several members of our church family and about 2000 other people, met at the Nashville Municipal Auditorium and packed the heck out of some rice and beans for about an hour, and broke the world record!
The food was shipped and has been sitting in port here in Haiti for a while. I’m not going to go into all the crazy details, but we finally got word that they would let the container out of port last week! And so, we waited for confirmation. Yesterday, we heard it would be delivered today, but that’s been said before so no one was holding their breath. But this time was real – and we found out it was on its way just after we finished lunch.
We excitedly waited near the entrance with Pierre and his wife, and our housemate who is interning at Maison for 3 months. The kids obviously sensed that something was going to happen and they began to stand behind us, waiting too. The truck finally arrived and after a few awkward attempts at backing in to one of the gates, it was decided that he should try the main entrance. Success! He backed in, parked, let the container down and left. The food that they had been waiting for for so long, had finally arrived.
Then, it was time to get busy unloading the container and getting the food upstairs to the designated storage rooms. Kids and nannies alike pitched in! It was a beautiful display of teamwork. (I don’t think Gary stopped once – even with a blown-out shoe, cut ankle, and bad rotator cuff.) Nearly 4 hours later – dripping in sweat, exhausted from fatigue, thirsty and hungry – we unloaded the last of the boxes. As we peered into the empty container, the kids hopped in and danced and sang celebrating the end of a hard, but joyous afternoon.
What an incredibly exciting time for our family – to be here, in Haiti, unpacking the very food that we packed just months go before we ever had plans to come here. And seeing, with our own eyes, the very boxes we packed marked with a heart with “Haiti” written inside it in Clover’s handwriting made it even more special. These people, that we have grown to know and love, will be eating food that our hands packed. I can’t properly explain what an incredible feeling this is!