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We Made It!

In July a team of 8 headed down to Haiti.  We had gotten a couple of notices from the State Dept. warning about some riots and even had one the morning we were leaving.  That riot was at the airport.  But we got in the van and drove on to RDU airport.  When we got there, the lady with JetBlue said our flights were canceled.  We all looked at each other and went, “What?”  Well, finally realized that two other flights were canceled, but ours was not.  We knew we didn’t have a choice, but to go on to Ft. Lauderdale, because if we chose not to go, we would never get any money back.  So we all checked our tubs and suitcases and headed on down.  When we got there, we found out more about the riots and the tax on fuel.  Within a few hours, our flight on to Haiti was canceled.  It was devastating.  For several, it was their first mission trip and 2 had gotten a Maxwell Scholarship to go.  We tried to get a later flight, but there was none available. So back to Fayetteville we went in three shifts.  It was hard week for all who were planning to be in Haiti.

But we still had all the gifts for our sponsored children to bring.  So it was suggested for us to come on September 14 for the Dedication of the High School that has been completed.  Most could not go because of school and work, but I planned to come on down and my daughter Hannah wanted to come with me because she had gotten one of those Maxwell Scholarships.  We were to leave on September 13.  Since it was just me and Hannah, we asked about Hannah leading some ballet classes for the girls that live with Pastor Leon’s daughter Nadege.  The home is called House of Hope and Nadege also said the girls needed black sneakers.  We got everything purchased and packed so we could leave on Thursday, but there was  one problem….there was a hurricane on it’s way and it was to hit the East coast of NC on Thursday.  Not again!!!  We had to wait for American Airlines to issue an alert and then we began working on changing the tickets.

Finally, we were set to leave on Wednesday…driving to RDU for a 1pm flight to Charlotte.  I dropped Hannah off at the AA ticket counter with our 2 suitcases and 3 tubs and then went to park my car.  We stood in line to get our boarding passes, then headed to security.  Finally, we had 20 minutes till the plane left when we heard, “Final call for flight….to Charlotte.”  We ran and barely made it.  Then we had a couple hours in Charlotte and headed to Miami.  Because our flight to Haiti wasn’t until the next day, we had to pick up our 5 pieces of luggage and sit with them all night at the airport.  There is no place to lay down at the airport and since we were not in the secured area, there was no carpet to lay on the floor.  And did I say it was freezing!!!  But finally about 5 am, we were able to recheck our luggage.  They wanted to make us pay for the extra luggage again, but I turned on my “Woo” strength and they waived the charges.  And finally we were on the final flight.  We were exhausted and had frozen most of the night, but we were almost there.

We tried to sleep on the flight and did to some extent and arrived around 1pm!  We were both so excited.  We went into the airport, made it through customs, got all our luggage and a security guy decided we needed to scan the tubs.  We did, but then he and another guy decided they needed to help us out with the goods.  I told them we could do, but they wouldn’t let us.  We walked out to see our name in the crowd and got the luggage tubs loaded and of course I had to tip those guys who just had to help us.

We made it Terre Noir and the children began getting out of classes.  We were hot and stinky, but what a joy to see all those faces.  Some of them recognized Hannah from being here in 2016.  She was so excited.  We have met with Nadege to plan some of the activities.  We will be at the dedication in the morning at 8:30am and then will get to visit with some of the children.  Hoping for Hannah to dance on Sunday and lead 3 classes of ballet.  We will see all of the sponsored children and give them their gifts on Monday.  It’s not been an easy road to get here, but we know this is where God wants us to be.  Our hearts are heavy as watch everyone prepare for Hurricane Florence, but we know God is in control and we give Him praise!  Enjoy the pics!