We made it to rest day at Wahoo Bay at long last. I think everyone was more excited to make it to air conditioned rooms and hot showers. I think with the air conditioning the heat rash and swelling on our legs and feet are finally starting to fade. Weirdly enough my feet no longer fit in my shoes. Luckily I brought an extra size up pair…
We made it 120+ miles in 5 days. I’m not sure if running 80 more miles in the next two days sounds good or not…but I will say that running through Haiti will forever be a memory that I will hold close to my heart. I cannot explain the various emotions that run through you when you see an entire country by foot and become so immersed in their culture.
Yesterday after our run (and of course a shower) we drove to Menelas to see our families. Once you step foot into their community you are instantly filled with incomprehensible emotions. The children come to grab your hand as if they’ve known you for years. Each runner received a pin from the Menelas families with the number 5 to represent the 5th year the Run Across Haiti® has taken place. It was a symbol of being initiated into their community. And at long last…we are now considered family.
Most of these children live in the landfill, however you couldn’t tell they lived in such conditions with the smiles on their faces. Work has provided these children a school in Menelas as a safe haven for them to go to when they are in need and it has also created an opportunity for them to earn an education and break this cycle of poverty. Everyone deserves to have an opportunity. And thanks to everyone, you have made this vision and dream possible for our families. With this in mind…this is what drives us to run a silly amount of miles. We run for those who can’t and we run for those who deserve more.
We made it. The first day is complete. It was 33 miles of heat, humidity, exhaust, smoke, unpaved roads, steep hills (or more appropriately mountains), and dodging numerous cars and trucks. And dodging traffic does include motorcycles…because by no means will they dodge for you.
Amongst all of these barriers that try to stop you from completing the milage of the day this country is truly beautiful.
Waking up at 2:30am to start running is not the most appealing thing in the world…however, there is nothing like running up a mountain with the sunrise peaking through the mountains. However, after some time the sun is not quite as friendly. I swear it tries its hardest to create a serious heat rash up your arms, legs, and I think it spread to my feet…
This experience is incredible and I would not trade it for the world. I am honored to run for this cause and among this group of “knucklehead” runners who all agreed to run a 200+ mile event. I think each of us get a little superpower strength when little kids start running alongside you and give you a fist bump.
We are running for one cause and that cause is for Haiti. That is the one motivation that keeps us all going through the pain, muscle spasms, strains, dehydration, exhaustion, and nausea from the heat.
Please help us meet our fundraising goal. We have so far raised over $200,000 collectively as a team to help break this cycle of poverty in Haiti. Help us make a difference by creating ripples. And as Phil Collins says, “Ripples never come back”.
Now I better get back to getting sunburned. Thanks for giving me a break from the sun to write this blog. I get sunburned in Columbus, Ohio and Buffalo, New York…let alone Haiti.
Thank you everyone for their support, prayers, and thoughts.