It is never boring in Haiti….
I’ve been told by Missionaries and Haitian friends for years that there are two rules to be sure to follow if you drive in Haiti:
1- If you get in an accident and someone is hurt. Leave the scene and go to the nearest Police station.
2- Never take an injured or sick person you find along the road to the hospital as you will then be responsible to pay the bills, feed them and care for them afterwards. And should they die, you are responsible and could be held accountable to the Police.
So, my day starts out heading from HCRM orphanage heading to the Village, down a rutted dirt road. I am driving behind a vehicle that stops in the road. A young man is lying in the road unconscious. His breathing is labored and pulse is weak. People standing by tell us he has been laying there over two hours and that the Red Cross was summoned (which has a satisfactory hospital in Gressier) but they refused to transport him as no one knew him. (See rule number two) They didn’t want to be responsible for him. They were going through his pockets as he lay there. I don’t know if they were looking for an ID or if they were intending to rob him. They found nothing.
As the Lord provided, the car that stopped ahead of me was driven by the Chief of Police for Gressier (see rule number 1). I asked him if he would transport him but he said he would not for the same reason. I told him I would, with his help.
The Chief refused to allow me to put him in the cab of my truck but would allow me to put him in the truck bed. I asked for help lifting him. No one came forward. The Chief pointed to two men and told them to help me. We loaded him into the bed of my truck and the Chief instructed the two men to ride in the bed with the dying man. He then led me to the Police station where he had a Police escort ready. As I didn’t know where the hospital was, the patrol car led the way on a twenty minute ride over somewhat paved roads to a Doctors Without Borders Hospital, where he was taken into the emergency department (a tent) and doctors started caring for him. It’s now 10 am and my day has just begun.
It’s never boring in Haiti.
I will have to give you the rest of the story as it unfolds. As to the question “when do you break the rules?” In Haiti, it is when God provides.