Friday, January 15, 2010

Haitians Still Amazingly Calm Despite Unimaginable Circumstances

You would practically have to live on another planet not to know about Haiti's horrific tragedy this past Tuesday. A 7.0 earthquake that has resulted in a tragedy of epic proportions.

Sadly, living on an island seems to magnify everything; both good and bad events, circumstances, situations. I guess it's because islands are compressed, compact societies where it is often impossible to remove yourself in the event things get antzy. Everything is absolutely up close and personal, and you can't always get away from it even when you want to.

You can't just fill up the tank, catch a Greyhound, or even put on your walking shoes and leave everything behind. No, it takes forethought, planning and most important ... possibility. In short, in certain circumstances, you might just find yourself STUCK in place. Certain circumstances like disasters such as hurricanes and yes, earthquakes.

My heart goes out to the people of Haiti. How well I can relate to those (even the able-bodied), who are helpless in the present situation. I am a survivor of Hurricane Marilyn that hit the Virgin Islands in '95. To be completely dependent on the goodwill of others for your well-being is to say the least, frightening.

For instance, I can't imagine being in the tropics for several days without water. Even if uninjured, how do you exist in 90 degree heat without water for that period of time? I couldn't. And, the media is now making an issue about some of the people becoming violent. Who wouldn't? They don't have access to communications and have no idea when and where help is coming from.

The plight of these helpless people is heart-wrenching.

Right now, the only thing most of us can do to help them is to contribute money and to pray. Let's all do lots of both.

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The adventures ... and misadventures of a city slicker turned mellow islander.