Friday, January 13, 2012

My Earthquake Story, Part 2

This is a continuation of yesterday's post "My Earthquake Story, for the First Time."

After the quake, I felt compelled to write everything down, on random scraps of paper, when I got the time. I rediscovered the scraps lately, and will post them here just as they are written, with the exception of a few notes I added in brackets to make it easier for you to understand.
Queency gets his broken femur wrapped. Ben went with Sean all over the city to get him amoxicillin.
Thursday-
Hung out with Mrs. Blesh, Bethaina, and Reagan on the soccer field. Met Flower, their little dog, talked about their Boise, Idaho family. Sat for a minute, went inside to girls' apartment, charging camera and US cell phone. Texted mom back & forth- US marines on ground, 1Fast2 is coming from Spain, UN is evacuating nonemerg personnel. Mom called state dept- only 200 of 45,000 Americans have registered alive. Ben went with Sean Blesh to get amoxicillin for the little boy with the serious head wound & broken femur- boy covered in tiny dot scars. Gone a long time, went to Manaserros & Clays' houses- both many injured there. Word came that CRI  & Convoys of Hope & John Ackerman surgical guys coming here. Dozens of choppers. Had french fries from snack shop- Lynette & Mrs. Etienne cooked. Saved plate for Ben. He returned w/Sean- got sacks of flour, antiinflammatory shot, amoxicillin. Boy laying on a door, covered in sheets, does not look good. Nicole said a 6th grade girl died w/her parents. Heard from all teachers- Tariq came, Mrs. Cange, Mirna ok. Meeting in bleachers- Ted came, chat w/ Tony & Steve, told us closed for awhile, groups coming here, can go or stay, may be cuts in teachers if budget cuts due to students leaving. Union [another American school] is down, Lysee Francais down, General Hospital too. Some went to Manasseros, Williams' house (had internet). Orphans cried all day. Haitians sat on picnic benches all day, some under awning. Boys played soccer. Ackermans came, Els & Stefan, Randall & Anita all came to campus. Ackermans left, said looting beginning up mountain. Got our bulletin board, made it command center. Put up elementary letters- in/out list. Lots of texting. Mom v. concerned. 1Fast2 coming from Spain. Went down to high school grove to write, went in to get paper from my room, helped Cathy and Tony put up lockers, cleaned up books fallen out, Cathy's Shakespeare bust shattered. Came out, meeting formed at table- Els, Stefan, Ted, Sean, Pastor Etienne, B & I. Decided to say we'll be open again after Karnival Break (Feb 22). Decided will host the aid groups. Staff split into 2 groups- education & crisis. Educator team will figure out how the seniors can graduate, what to do in the remaining weeks, how to prepare packets/give books. Sat w/ Bleshes for awhile, talked about adoption- Bleshes left for supplies from house, will return. Meeting with young teachers- Jenni, Ben, Tony, Jaime, Katie, Steve, Tony. Some considering evacuation @ 6 am @ the embassy- show up & wait, bring your own food/water. Orphans didn't go to Mears'. Out of water @ Tony's. Dinner here @ Tony's. We'll stick for a day or two, re-evaluation. I'm worried. Art & Sean security chiefs for tonight. I'm so sticky. Still white shirt, jeans, sports bra, tennis shoes.
Three Angels orphanage evacuated to our school; kids lived on the porch
Friday the 15th 4 pm                  Degaje- make it work
Last night we sat out by the stars for awhile before bed. Passed the phone around to call home. Talked to my parents for 18 min. Dinner @ Tony Kulpa's- stew and potato. Tap water ran out while cooking. Slept, B & Art went for security duty. Bleshes returned in the night. Tremor around 5 am. Up @ 6. Got up, Bleshes getting meds for kid w/ broken femur, went home w/Ben to our house. $10k already in the [school's] paypal relief account. 9:30 pm Tony couldn't get his parents on the phone. Played w/ 3 Angels orphans in mid-day- wild orphanage kids. Tag, swings, steps. Went home, walked fast, bonjour to all. Internet worked! Blogged, even uploaded 9 pics. Posted a new FB status. Not really people in streets like I feared. Spit bath, new clothes- yucky bad socks, yucky Abercrombie jeans. B washed tshirts, socks, undies, my jeans in a bucket, hung to dry in bathroom. Washed front 1/3 of my hair in sink. Prepped house for looting- hid things. Brushed teeth- 1st time since quake. Put on mascara, purple AA tee. Got video camera and discs. Stocke dup. Brought pasta, left Bible. Got water. B lost charger for his phone. Talked to Dorothy thru window, DR family went back. Back to school- no change. Denise went for 3 BRESMA kids [large orphanage] staying w/ Haitian mom. All BRESMA kids getting out- plane coming, Bethaina, too. Bleshes cleaned elementary library-books on shelves, shelves to wall. Got 3 bites. Plane coming tom, seats, Ruth & kids going. Katie M & Jenni going, helped pack. Orphans here again. Germans came- Humedica, doctor, and a tv crew. Obnoxious photography of broken femur boy- Els & Jamie C mad. Going to Hope Hospital tomorrow, brought supplies, Miquette & 5 translators going. B having stomach problems. Talks to my parents, saw CNN/Fox coverage for the first time. Emails from friends at Lariat, Dallas Morning News, People. CRI arrived- Ted's son. Drove from DR. Not medical- do what then? Military coming in morning- Southern Command leader a QCS alum?! We'll go to Quisqueya Chapel at 9 am to help Convoy of Hope if we're not occupied. Ben on guard duty now. Talked adoption with Jenni, ate spoilable leftovers at Tony's. Strawberries, grapes, cool whip, and cinnamon rolls.

20 days old, severely dehydrated
Sat Jan 16
7 pm Learned:
Dehydrated preemie, 20 d old. Casting. "Radio 32" [a Haitian phrase meaning gossip from the mouth mouth- 32 teeth- are faster than radio]. Scabies. What gangrene looks/smells like. What it's like to have rats. Degaje. 1 meal/day. Infected wounds. Unset broken bones. Smell of urine, death. Raw sewage, no garbage. Creole: "como rele" [what's your name]. No teeth brushing, no flushing our toilet. Today: up at 6 again. To house- got router for school to try & use. B on roof w/ Sean. Ate granola bar, some dry cereal from Mrs. Etienne. Cut up name badges for Tony Dekoter. Headed to Quisqueya Chapel with Nicole, Cathy, Jaime, Ben, & Miriam. Long walk. Beforehand, said goodbye to Jenni, Katie M, Ruth & kids, 4 Mississippi ladies stuck here. They're in FL already. At Quisqueya Chapel, Convoys of Hope w/ Mission Hope w/ Northwest Haiti Mission doing medical clinic and feeding. "Manna rice" w/freeze-dried veggies, high protein. Many others. Did wound care on several- little babies, old bleached hair lady, young woman w/2 fingertips rotting- did saline w/ Brad & Melissa. Delighted to be busy, fetched supplies, loved. 20-d old tiny baby w/severe malnourish & dehydration. No inet xcept short this morning- emailed with Dallas Morning News, People, Lariat. Spoke to a CNN producer on Vonage. Invited back on Mon to the clinic. Ben carried bodies on stretchers. UN Pakistan arrived, checked things out.
Back to school around 5 ish. Germans back, doctors + film crew. School in DR dropped off mucho load food- quickly hidden away. Bleshes are still here- BRESMA evac waiting on last few signatures from judge (had to go find- was in hiding). Got head count, badges. Dominicans drs- attitude. CRI people had returned- never any military. Mrs. Manassero was at QCS, as was the Clays' friend (YL, Afghanistan). Tomorrow- who knows? To school early, hopefully some church. We heard French drs were at Manasseros today. Got rice & beans, water. Got sunburned today. Home before dark. Cold shower- water on 2 mins or less. Inet worked for a min- 12 min Skype w/ Wilhoits, Wayne & Taylor. Mom saw Hersey evac on FB, wondered if we were coming too. We lit candles and wrote. Salsa ruined, fridge stinks. Got to shave kind of. NASCAR guys donated plane? School tempers rising...on street- Epidor [local bakery] open, ladies selling, chicken men, lots of cars- good signs. Wore masks today.


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That's it. After that I stopped writing every night. Well, that not wholly true- we had internet more often, so I was blogging. We slept on the couches of an on-campus apartment for a week or more, until all the apartment's occupants had evacuated, and then we moved into one of the bedrooms. We lived in a four-bedroom apt. with another married couple and two single girls. We held a parent meeting on January 28 and the parents of over 60 students showed up; we began classes one-room-schoolhouse-style the next week.

There are still two high school girls wearing their father's wedding bands on necklaces. Most of our kids lost someone- an aunt, a grandmother. We pray for them extra today.

Katie

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