I made my first trip to Haiti in July 2001, and I've been back twice since (2002 and 2006). The country and its people have always remained with me, and at least since 2006 I have been part of a family, an adopted child of a Vodou house in Port-au-Prince. While Egypt always has the best part of my heart, Haiti probably has the most earnest part, as it is a place equal in its beauty and its terror: the most bittersweet place I have ever loved.
Yesterday as you all already know a major earthquake hit just outside of the city, on the side where my Haitian family is. I'm using my Facebook fan page to distribute news from the family and the extended family as fast as I can since it's set to also send that information directly from Twitter. For the most part we still can't get through to anyone but we're scared. The lakou (compound) where most of them are living is a block from the palace...that palace that is completely broken now.
I'll update as I get news. Right now - Haitians need help.
Keep the phone lines open so families can get out to their families outside of Haiti that they are all right. Don't call Haiti - call me or call someone else who is gathering news like me so we can keep those phones clear. Consider sending money to the Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity, or Wyclef's YELE HAITI, all of which I know are collecting money already, or other reputable charities that work in Haiti. When our family is accounted for and we know what's going on I'll have more news to pass on that. Pray for everybody and for this beautiful country that's already suffered too much.
Link here to my Twitter page for real-time updates as I get them.
Fanmi mwen: mwen pa bliye ou. Please be safe.