Saturday, December 31, 2011

The New Year

Soup Joumou
They sing loud and clear.  I can hear their voices raised from across the ravine.  "Oh, how I love Jesus because He first loved me."  Again and again the music rolls forward until it is more than words sung but  hearts engaged.  Haitian voices, singing in unison, are definitely one of my favorite sounds.

The fireworks pop and crack tonight - magnified by concrete structures.  All three boys energetically blew off their last little stock pile of Black Cats.  This country, with such an interesting history, celebrates its won independence from France.  Patriotism runs high as it should...these people have fought hard.  Tomorrow, many Haitians will eat one of their favorite dishes.  Soup Joumou is a soup they created once they had the freedom to eat whatever they like because they were no longer slaves.  The Haitian boys have been looking forward to this cuisine for quite some time.  They'll gladly eat it for lunch and supper.  Delicious.

Charismene, our house help, told us in Creole that tonight when she finished the dishes she was going to church to adore (worship in song) God, dance and pray the new year in.  She wouldn't get home until one in the morning.  She looked tired but happy to be a part of this yearly tradition.  After giving her eldest a few final instructions she slipped past the iron gate topped with razor wire in her flippy floral skirt.  Makayla admired how pretty she looked.  She'd walk alone.

The motorcycles interject their ascending grumbles while tap-taps beep their horns.  The voodoo bongos provide the background beat to the night's events.  Voodoo is very active this time of year.  So many things all at once.  This is Haiti.

The kids head to bed after a few chapters of The Hobbit with Jason.  Inside, our house grows calm and I find myself lost in the sounds.  There is so much to take in.  Too much to process.  I scratch new and old mosquito bites on my ankles and simply pray, "Come Jesus, come.  Let Your Kingdom come.  Be jealous for these people's affection and bring clarifying truth that fills hearts and lives with joy!"

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