Monday, October 13, 2008

Busy weekend

Hello everyone,

Sorry it's been a few days since I've posted, but the internet was down for a time, and it turned out to be a very busy weekend. Friday I cut a bit of steel with the plasma cutter, and then finished up the AutoCAD drawings I was working on. Not that you care, but I was able to get 10 molds out of 6 sheets of 1/8" and 1.5 sheets of 1/4" steel (I was happy).

Plasma cutting on Friday.

Saturday we celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving because it turns out there are quite a few Canadians in Haiti. Why...I'm not so sure, but I think part of it has to do with the fact that some Canadians speak French already, and Creole (Haitian language) is French based. I didn't see much of a difference between Canadian and American Thanksgiving, except the fact that this one was spent with sweat dripping down my face as opposed to everyone being bundled up in sweaters. My stomach was bothering me a little so I didn't go all out on the spread of food (unlike me, ha ha), but everything was very good.

Notice the Canadian flag napkins, ha ha.
Canadian Thanksgiving in Haiti.
As I mentioned, my stomach was a little off, and I was feeling a bit light-headed, but I was still able to entertain these three children without moving from the couch. I am driving a truck and we are dodging a crater (aka Haitian pothole). No worries, they put their invisible seat belts on before we went anywhere :o).
Ok, now here's for the best part. The ride to and from our Thanksgiving dinner was better than any Six Flags roller coaster. As a kid, I always wanted to ride in the back of trucks if I had the chance (as most boys do I think), but it was usually unsafe or illegal. Now, being that the truck is the current transport vehicle, Chris, Leslie, and Olivia sit up in the cab while the boys (Matt and I), stand in the back.

The All-Haitian Scream Machine in the back there (New Jersey's Six Flags Great Adventure has the All-American Scream Machine...if you were wondering).
Now in order to stay aboard this 55 mph ride while it flies down dirt roads and dodges craters, goats, humans, etc..., you need to stand behind the cab and hold onto a red cross-bar (not quite visible in the picture, sorry). Taking pictures is not an option, and sunglasses are mandatory. I tried to take some pictures mid-ride, but I was unsuccessful because my one hand almost lost grip of the truck, and my other hand could barely hold onto the camera. Most importantly are the sunglasses (aka windshield). You need to wear them even if it's dark out, because otherwise you would have eyes full of dirt and bugs.
I'm hoping you can see the dirt and bug build-up on my glasses, because it's quite comical. Once I learn how to weld I'm thinking about welding on some extra guards on the top, bottom and sides, ha ha. Oh, and don't fix your hair before this ride, because it will look like this at the end :).
Ok, last funny thing before I go to bed. Tonight after dinner I was talking with Matt and Leslie in the house when I noticed Chris grab his BB gun, and do a quick lock & load. He didn't head outside, but headed to the kitchen. He put the sight to his eye, pulled the trigger, and I heard something drop and hit the ground outside. So it turned out there was a big rat on the kitchen counter near the window. There aren't any screens in the windows, so when he shot, it was a direct hit and the thing flew out of the window onto the ground...bulls eye :). Had he missed the bb would have gone straight thru a juice pitcher that the rat was in front of, but, no worries, Chris is apparently a marksman, ha ha.
Below are a few shots I took before dinner this evening. There were some Haitians out fishing in the sunset, it was quite pretty.
Pase bon nwi. (Good night)


celine said...

nice photo work...i notice a faster shutter speed on the second pic (smaller sun rays)...i love playing with light and miss it quite a bit. (boo hoo for me, i know you have heard it all before). great rat story.

Anonymous said...

I found your blog from Leslie's. Love the rat story too and great pics of the sunset. Nothing quite like riding in the back of a truck eh. (A little Canadian to go with the napkins) :)
Glad to see you are enjoying your time in Haiti. I enjoy your posts.

Owen said...

Hey Celine: Good observation, you are correct :). Although, I just have a point & shoot camera, so my settings are a bit limited.

Kelly: Welcome to the extention of Leslie's blog. I'm nowhere near as experienced, but I'm learning from the best. I'm surrounded by Canadians, ha ha.

Anonymous said...

Hello bro! This is Steven. God, this is exciting!!! It seems that there are a lot fun in Haiti. I like your daily activities there. You can drive a truck, and I want to see the invisible seat belt on that truck. What is the invisible seat belt that you mentioned? People in Haiti can make invisible seat belt? What a high technology they have! Can the truck transform, like autobots do?

Haiti is so beautiful. The lake looks clear. I wish I could graduate now, and joined you. Hahahaha....

Barb J :) said...

HI Owen,
I'm a CWH person. (Ask Chris)

I wanted to let you know that you are living with a world class varmit slayer. Ask Chris about this, ask him for his stats the numbers are impressive.

Don't open your mouth in the shower and maybe you will have less tummy trouble. Ask me how I know? I never have gotten tummy trouble with our filters, and I had a boat load of trouble without the filters.

Your blog is great and your photos are exceptional. Are you posting them to Fickr?

Eat ripe fried plantains, yum!!!

Barb J :)

Owen said...

Hello Barb J,
I will definitely ask Chris about his rodent killing statistics. Also, thanks for your stomach suggestions. Things have been much better, but I guess you would recommend that I stop brushing my teeth with the well water too, ha ha.

Anonymous said...

Hey Owen,

Julia and I just checked out your sight. We can't wait to see you and hear about all of your experiences.

Stay well and know that we are thinking of you.

Love, A. Colleen

Owen said...

Hello Aunt Colleen,

Thanks for the note. Keep checking back and I'll do my best to give you new material :). Give the girls hugs and kisses for me.