There is a spirit and spirituality in Haiti like nowhere else. Haitians are resolute and tenacious and,
in time, will move beyond the horrendous hardships they are currently facing. Haiti changes you.
Below the flow of everyday life is a rhythm that knows how to celebrate being alive. A rhythm that gives memories to all of the senses.
For me it is the sights. Haitians have a vibrancy for life that shows in the bold, tropical colors they surround themselves with.
No matter how humble their abode, it will be brightly painted and often the clothes they wear or the utensils they use in their daily lives are just as bright and cheerful.
“It is the destiny of the people of Haiti to suffer.”
Jean Claude Duvalier
“Civil and political rights are critical, but not often the real problem for the destitute sick.
My patients in Haiti can now vote but they can’t get medical care or clean water.”
Creole, the spoken language of most Haitians, is rich and colorful as well.
Creole based largely on 18th-century French and some West African languages, and is influenced by several other languages.
In school, all kids learn both Creole and French.
Here is a sampling of Haitian proverbs and prayers translated from Creole.
“A woman is like mahogany: the older she is, the better she is.”
How glad we are
that we don’t hold you,
but that you hold us.”
“Our problems are like a donkey.
Will we mount them or will they mount us?”
Everyone is either whole corn
or corn with weevil holes.
Make me whole corn.”
“Hang your knapsack where you can reach it.”
Make you and me like coffee with milk
Mixed together we can never be separated.”
“To speak French doesn’t mean you are smart.”
“Help us not to talk too much because talking too much
is like driving too fast.”
“Sometimes the brakes are not good and we passed
the place we intended to stop.”
“Beyond mountains, there are more mountains.”
For more Haiti images click here.