This post comes to us from WFPK’s Mark Bacon, who is in Haiti.

There’s a verse in the Gospel of Matthew (I’m paraphrasing) that states whatever one does for the least of mankind, one does for Christ. It was my/our goal for this trip to do exactly that…to do as much as possible. Today, the work began. We loaded 89 boxes–at 14 kilos each–of rice and soy meals. (Each meal feeds about 6 people.) While wet, which everything is here, the boxes were closer to 50 pounds. We loaded them into a truck and headed to Croix de Boquet. Once there, we unloaded the boxes into small bags of 5 meals each, and added other items for recipients. I wasn’t at that end f the assembly line, so I am not sure what all went in. Not to worry. It’s all welcome.

Heat and dust are omnipresent as are the wonderful, smiling and unbelievably friendly Haitians. This place is amazingly friendly, almost to a fault. We began work at 6:45 a.m., and were done by about 11. Then we went for walks and hikes, and had lunch in the gorgeous countryside. By the way, have you ever wondered about the title of Tracy Kidder’s book, Mountains Beyond Mountains? There are literally mountains beyond mountains here, and I’m not talking about the Smokies, Wasatch or San Francisco range (though it is beautiful). Later, we took trip into town to what I would call a metal workers collective. We saw where the Haitian art (tap taps, etc) is made. In town, we found more friendly people–where else could I trade 4 cigarettes for part of a cruficifix for my collection?

After visiting town, we went back to Hope House for more work, where it got interesting. “That smells pretty” was a very telling quote for the afternoon. We threw out maggot eggs, perhaps dead things, from wet rice. We unloaded the nasty, soiled boxes and filled good ones until we all about dropped. Others in our group sorted clothes that folks Stateside donated.

Folks, FOR REAL! Some people donated dirty underwear and soiled sheets. Pretty, huh? America. Such a country.

We called it a night a little bit ago. (This post was sent over the weekend-ed) A cold shower in a relatively funky shower never felt better. Four days until a hot shower? I can’t wait. Pity the cat next to me on the plane home…I wish I hadn’t lost my Q-Tips.

And already, Haiti is part of my personal landscape. The people and sights get in you fast. Selah.