I don’t know what time it was — or more or the point, how close to boarding time it was — but suddenly, the expeditor appeared in the departure lounge and handed me a plastic bag.
The ER at the hospital in Milot looked rather chaotic inside, but this hospital looked chaotic even from the outside. There was a huge pile of rubble in the parking lot, wheelchairs were strewn about the exterior, and half the compound seemed to be under construction.
I’m not proud to admit this, but my first thought was “I already have broken bones. I really don’t want to go get cholera.”
I’ve been in hospitals in the ‘developing’ world before, but never as a patient. And even though I’m actually rather accident-prone, I’d never been to an emergency room anywhere, ever. […]
During the time I was lying on the ground, my whole body was in such a state of shock that I couldn’t really feel anything or determine what was hurting. I remember thinking to myself “If I can get my leg out from under the vehicle without any damage, I might be okay.”
What happened next didn’t exactly transpire in slow motion, but somehow I was sensing and processing things faster than I could physically react.
Around much of the Caribbean, the period before Lent is a whole season; indeed in Haiti, the Carnaval season seems to stretch from the New Year right up to Mardi Gras.