Since we got to Haiti, every Haitian that we have asked has insisted it is safe here now. Even the white foreigners say that Haiti is safe now, that the gangs have been dispersed, and that Haiti has peace. For now. We are however (and forever will be) very careful here. We never travel anywhere without Haitians with us (partly because we can not function or communicate, but also for safety purposes). I have noticed, though, how peaceful the country seems politically. 

Life feels a little less peaceful when entering the market. We went to the local market (with 5 Haitians of course) on Thursday. When I say market, I really just mean utter Mayhem. Chaos. Havoc. Everyone is running around. Carrying anything and everything. Its muddy from rain. The smells all combine to form a nostril-cleansing pasty haze. The meat selections come covered in flies, and of course cow esophagus and donkey hooves are both options for the taking. Live chickens cost more than the pre-slaughtered variety. Noises everywhere, buckets carried mostly on heads, and yet most of the people give us huge smiles, loving the fact that we are experiencing their lives, living with them. And they may not know that we love being here even more than they could realize. I feel alive here. 

One of the guys who walked us to the market is a guy named Andeson. He is a member of the church here in our village and he is so incredibly gentle, yet has a laugh that can ignite uproarious joy.  He is 24 and speaks perfect creole (as expected, but i am still jealous).  He was at church today and hanging out with some of the church staff this afternoon. I met him years ago, and every time I see him, I think I really want to be his friend. For real. I know that much just by his demeanor, his smile, his handshake, and his laugh. But there is this gaping language barrier between me and about 98 percent of all Haitians. Andeson included. But today we attempted yet another broken creole/broken english conversation. I was so blessed. He asked me if I love Haiti. I explained I did because the people here are so special (but I dont know how to say even that sentence in creole). So, all I got out was that the people in this village love me. And I love them. He said that is because Jesus is in his heart. And Jesus is in my heart. And so "we love us" is how the creole phrase translated (meaning, the Haitian and the American believers love each other).

My new friend and I realized we both want to learn each other's language. We both need a teacher. And thus we are starting English/Creole class tomorrow. He is the Creole "pwofese", and the Americans are the English "teachers". And we get to hang out every day and grow as friends. I can tell him about my culture, and he can teach me about his, and we get to share life with each other. Daily. Learning from each other. And growing together as friends.

So God continues to give us friends. We feel blessed. The Haitians love us really well, and we love getting to live this life together with them. 

P.S. Jay wrote this blog -- just clarifying for anyone worried about Diana spending one-on-one time with Haitian men. That is not happening. Nor vice versa.