It’s June in Haiti and it is hot.
We are walking down the main road of Fond des Blancs, Haiti on market day. Carol and the two other women from the Artisana point out various items and share bits of information about them while teaching us Creole.
My French is good enough to get by but my Creole, on the other hand, leaves a lot to be desired.
The women sitting on the side of the street traveled many miles from remote rural villages on their mules.
They work all day in the piercing hot sun selling their wares.
All of this work to earn about a dollar a day.
I stop and shop for some vegetables for dinner. A lady smiles at me. I try to speak in Creole. I’m pretty sure she stifled a giggle.
I imagine how different her life could be.
I look back at Carol. She has four children. We were both delighted when we found out we had that in common. When I met her beautiful daughter, I was reminded of my own 13-year-old daughter.
Carol works at the Artisana earning a fair wage thanks to our partner, Haiti Projects, who operates the Artisana. She makes beautiful linen yoga mat bags. The money she earns allows her to afford to send her children to school.
When we hug Carol goodbye after our tour of the market, I wasn’t sure if we would have a chance to see her again during our visit. I didn’t know it, but my favorite moment was yet to come. It turns out Carol throws a mean punch! [watch this quick 30 sec clip of the Artisana women learning Krav Maga with our co-founder Julie Morrill]