Our time is coming to a close. I have mixed feelings about that fact. On one hand, I am ready to see my family and return to my life in the states, and on the the other hand, I could do this work forever, for it doesn’t feel finished. Doing three shows a day for much longer would take a great toll on my body, but with a day off or two, I would be ready to go again…maybe. It is difficult to say, psychologically, how one could sustain this kind of work long term.
We have had mixed reactions to our presence in the camps. Many of the adults have looked upon us with skepticism. In speaking with our translator, Saul, Michael discovered that this skepticism is a result of assuming that the clowns are making a good deal of money off of the Haitian people. When Saul explains to them that we are volunteering our time and energy, their entire disposition shifts and they smile at us with gratitude and openness. It is difficult to receive the looks of disdain but also understandable. It is nice when Saul sets the record straight and we are received rather than the people feeling intruded upon.
For the most part, the Haitian people have been really receptive to us, which helps so much. It would be really difficult to do this work if the people didn’t want us to perform, or worse, felt hostility toward us just for being present. I will miss this place. This trip has been an amazing reminder of how resilient, how buoyant the human spirit can be. It will serve as a constant reminder of what constitutes true happiness, connections with the people around you and the choice to build community rather than resort to isolation. We need to support each other in this world. We need to look outside our towers of contentment and heed the call of those in crisis. It is a fine thing to do “well” in this world but if we could do “good,” others, not only ourselves would reap the benefit.