Flying Kites, Rara Bands, and Poisson Gros Sel: Easter Season in Haiti

Easter traditions in Haiti include kite flying, rara bands, and food. Soaring in the wind, simple, colorful kites express the longing to transcend the quotidian. And rara brings music, tapped out on metal instruments, many rough and angular, hewn from scraps of metal and old oil drums. As for food, Haitian Poisson gros sel (Rock … More Flying Kites, Rara Bands, and Poisson Gros Sel: Easter Season in Haiti

On the Borderlands

Uniformed men on horseback, lassos at the ready, chase brown and black people stumbling in the surging water of the Rio Grande near Del Rio, Texas. The photographs shock. They call up long-buried images. Of the Ku Klux Klan night riding. Of patrollers chasing runaway slaves. Of Native Americans and the U.S. Cavalry at Wounded … More On the Borderlands

Hospitality, a Forgotten Concept in Today’s World: A Tale of Ice Cubes

Open-air markets symbolize community to me. Time as commodity – which is how we view it in this country – disappears in the hustle and bustle of these markets. What matters is relationships between people. Community. And hospitality, in other words. Hospitality takes many forms. Learning how to recognize those forms takes much time, sometimes … More Hospitality, a Forgotten Concept in Today’s World: A Tale of Ice Cubes

Memories of Chaos: Reflecting on Dictatorship

There’s something very disturbing to me about witnessing 20,000 armed soldiers in the U.S. Capitol building. Why? Perhaps this story might explain why. At least partially. I lived on an island in the Caribbean – Haiti – for nearly three years. My husband Mike worked with a USAID-sponsored farming-systems project, surveying Haiti’s agricultural infrastructure by … More Memories of Chaos: Reflecting on Dictatorship