Wednesday, January 8, 2014

10 Things I have Learned in 2014

1) I do not pretend to understand Haitian tax code, but rumor has it, you don’t have to pay property taxes if you don’t paint your house. As a result, most houses in Haiti are pretty boring to look at.

2) I teach English at the Episcopal High School in Léogâne one day a week and am the only female teacher that the school has had since 1987. Apparently, not that many women make it through the teaching certification program.

3) Haiti has a tradition of homeopathic medicine that uses natural plants, herbs, and ingredients. It could be interesting to explore!

4) At some point in trying to not fail high school gym class, I actually learned how to play volleyball well enough to not embarrass myself on the beach.

 5) Before the slave revolt, slavers forbade slaves from eating certain foods, including pumpkins. To this day, Haitians eat pumpkin soup on January 1st in celebration of their Independence Day. Unfortunately, no one that I was with on New Years Day knew how to make pumpkin soup, so we contented our selves by making the delicious fried Haitian treat of Paté, a fried dough with spicy peppers, fish, hot dogs, onions, garlic, and green peppers. Sounds weird but it is delicious!

6) My name and pictures I took at the FSIL Christmas events made it into the Haitian newspaper! #famous!

7) TSA will throw away sunscreen in your carry-on but will allow Gingerbread House frosting to pass through! Former YASCer Cameron came to visit while I was in Cap and brought us this fun treat to celebrate our late Christmas.
The first gingerbread house ever for Fritz, Ashley's interpreter/assistant/friend
8) When you visit the home/office of the Music Program Coordinator for the Northern Region of Haiti, you can get a private concert!
9) On a 15 person prop plane between Léogâne and Cap Haitian, they open the windows when you are taxiing. And you can see the pilots through the entire flight.
The Plane

The pilots (and the back of some guys head with a full head of hair.)

10) The East Coast is experiencing a Polar Vortex. I am feeling really sorry for y’all. The beach was lovely here on January 2nd.

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