Updated: Jan 11
We are the proud owners of a couple new things...
Two goats... Black is female and the brown is male. They are doing what they do best... Destroying things. Our precious mango tree, my sweet potato plant that mom in law found growing wild in the backyard, and the spinach and flowers she planted. All eaten. But they're the cutest little things and Zèzè says we can't tie them because of being gone all day they won't be able to get shade. They hate me so far. I wonder if horse taming techniques would work! Today the black one came in the kitchen. I chased him out so fast! ...And a car. It's a little diesel Hyundai Tucson. Diesel is cheaper and easier to get here. Zèzè says it's my car... A "girl" car. If I had my way I would prefer to never drive it... At least not in Port au Prince. I drove home from church last night and we stopped a couple places on some roads I hadn't ever been on and by then it was dark and the tint is super black for safety. So Quiara missed the left turn to the house. Also at Delimart I couldn't get parked cuz there was so many cars and it was way tighter parking than in USA plus also a big security guard with an even bigger gun was making mysterious man traffic hand signals to me and I know he was being helpful but I've never caught on to all those. The intersections are incredibly dangerous. They could at least have 4 way stops but no! There are motos and cars everywhere and you can't even follow the car in front really cuz they make all different lanes to go around potholes. And Zèzè says why don't you just go? Meanwhile a moto zips by one both sides, a car honks and Quiara says do you want to DIE right now? The car belonged to a Haitian living in DR and she was having trouble getting insurance so that's why she sold it. We went to Belladere, a border crossing past Mirabalais that's pretty low key with security. You go northeast of Port au prince, up Mòn Kabrit (goat mountain) where our little kids come from and past our congregation in Fonds Michelle and it's all mountains from there. Mountains with houses anywhere and I ask Zèzè how the people get there and he just shrugs. And there's palms and banana plants and corn and sugar cane... A few plants of them mixed in wherever, in ditches or people's yards. I just put it in Google maps and it says 92 Km from here and it took us close to 3 hrs. So I thought the road wasn't bad for over here but you're still averaging 35 mph or so probably. We had over 3 hours to kill when we got there so we parked and bought diri, sòs pwa, and Couronne (orange cream soda kind of). Zèzè and I sat in back of the ladies little tarp covered tent and ate at a very greasy table. Then all us ladies wanted to go shopping so we left Ben and Zèzè to sleep and went and dug thru all the pèpè. It's bales of clothes that come from North America and you can sometimes find good bargains. I was looking for sheets or fabric to make curtains. So we got discouraged and came back and Zèzè and I hung out under a tree by a big Catholic church on some semi broken lawn chairs with some other guys who were just chilling. And then the ladies went back to the pèpè and lo and behold bought stuff because they didn't have a white girl with them. White girls make bargaining impossible. We managed to get the car in the end and on the way home I was exclaiming about something beautiful and I asked Zèzè if Haitians really appreciated their country's beauty. And he said yes, but every Haitian would choose it to be as ugly as Iraq if there was money and jobs here. He's so matter of fact about life here... Always throwing cold water when my head gets up in the clouds.
I have to tell you a bit about our Sunday because even if you're old this will bring back newlywed memories. Our church starts at 9 or 930. Quiara has boiled beans, vegatables for legume, and mysterious meat that Matant R was sent to buy that she chucked in the freezer Saturday morning without looking at it. At around 8 Zèzè announces that a friend is coming for lunch but he has an appointment at 2. He knows I'm a fast cook and can get the food ready. So I start tearing around the kitchen like a white girl. And Zèzè is wandering around so I tell him to make juice. He is very pleased with the result and I bite my tongue because there went probably close to 2 cups of sugar and enough grenadia for 2 days in one little pitcher. "But S liiikkes sweeeeet juice!" Then I dig out the meat. And it's a huge unrecognizable slab of beef and I frantically text mom a pic to ask her WHAT it IS and what I should do with it. And Zèzè just says, "It's beef. Haitian meat. And I told him not to leave any bones because I know you hate finding bones in legume." No answer from mom so Zèzè gets our biggest knife and saws of 3 big chunks, grins, and is like," This legume is gonna be so good it will have so much meat!" And I look in the kettle and see three pieces bigger than hamburgers or steaks... Way too much for my little veggie supply. And swallow my tongue again. THEN I ask what the other bag of meat is and he said hamburger. And I probably visibly wilted. Because the whole point of this meat buying was to get something OTHER then hamburger. We can eat a pound of hamburger for 3-4 times and I have 3 left from the wedding yet! But it's meat. A whole grocery bag of it. Frozen together. A little bit of brown juice dripping out and it fills up half my freezer. Be thankful Quiara and look on Pinterest for meals to make with hamburger.
Yes, we were late for church. Lunch was at 2 and S left at 230 laughing and saying he'd tell them he was caught in traffic. Just before he left our pastor and his whole family stopped in. My porch was covered with a big bunch of maskriti stalks that I'm supposed to be shelling to make castor oil. The wall hanging in the living room was falling down. Almost very dish in the house was dirty. And the floor hadn't been mopped since Thursday. But I put on a smile and baked my last pan of chocolate cookies and gave them ice water. And squirmed with embarrassment inwardly. Such is life! And we were late to church again in the eve... Almost didn't go because I was in the shower 10 minutes after we were supposed to be there but yay for Haiti they hadn't even started yet.
I was so hungry for Louisiana food and so tired of hamburger that I decided it was red beans and rice or bust even if I only had salami for sausage.
If you're from Louisiana I double dare you to put a slice of bell pepper with cloves stuck in it next time. You see I have a little hot pepper too just like Haitian food! Probably explains why my husband said, "Is this sos pwa?"
And yes I served Haitian picklis with it and it was GOOD. I share my husband's opinion about mayonnaise coleslaw. He said he took a big helping of the pikliz at some white people party and almost spit it out he was so surprised because it was SWEET. And that taught him to be careful with white's food.
I had been hungry for honey bun cake for days and basically didn't have one ingredient for it, so here's the result of several recipes put together. I want to go eat the whole rest of the pan with black iced coffee right now. If you're ever dead broke, have a lot of extra mayonnaise, and are craving honey bun cake...
1 1/2 c flour
1 tsp soda
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 c sugar
1 tsp vanilla
5 Tbsp oil
1 Tbsp vinegar
1/2 c mayo
1/2 c water
Put 2/3 batter in an 8x8 pan then sprinkle with 1/3 cup sugar and 1 tsp cinnamon. Swirl the rest of the batter on top and bake.
1/4 c sugar
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp milk
1/2 tbsp flour
Melt together, adding flour last. Allow to thicken slightly, then immediately spread over still warm cake.
It's so soft and sweet enough to make Zèzè drink BLACK ICED COFFEE! LOL! I think you could eat it for breakfast if you left off the glaze.
Happy Monday to you all!