The camp

Say what you will about showers in the dark in plywood stalls with only cold water.

At least it’s not a ravine.

The camp for volunteers is rustic with creature comforts like flush toilets (albeit in plywood stalls).

When I saw those toilets on Sunday, I was so shocked — figuring we’d have hot-box portapotties — that after I used one, I went to wash my hands and stood at a line of outdoor sinks waiting for the water to automatically turn on.

Really, I did that, even though the sinks were empty basins tied into plywood walls outdoors with PVC pipe running throughout and big turn-off valves.


And yet. That first day I did what I do at work in Omaha where the toilet automatically flushes, the sinks automatically turn on, the papertowels automatically (well, they’re supposed to) spit out.

Man we’re spoiled.

We’ve got it pretty good here with the cots, the tents, the Irish meals, the 5,000 bottles of water we’re consuming daily here.

Let alone back home.

And it’s not like the Haitians I’ve seen aren’t getting on with it. Kids are going to school in pristine — PRISTINE — pressed uniforms. Young guys are playing soccer. Moms are cooking meals in pots on wood fires outside. People laugh, shop, live.

It’s not like things were out of whack after the earthquake.

But why now are we really taking a look at a country that has struggled more than it should have to for 200 years?

Automatic sinks.


Erin Grace

About Erin Grace

She's a World-Herald news reporter who covers an array of topics -- education, government and issues affecting women and children. She's married with three children.
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  1. Ron philistin says:

    Hi Erin,

    It was a pleasure meeting you and your co-workers. You got to leave camp (jealous)
    I enjoyed what I have read so far. I will continue to read and share with my friends.