Friday, March 7, 2014

6 reasons to go to Haiti

1: The colour

Haiti is one continuous swirl of pattern and colour. Children in green-, blue- or red-checked gingham uniforms gather for an after-school snack. Pink and turquoise plastic kitchen utensils are piled for sale next to mountains of orange, yellow and green citrus fruits at the market. Lottery kiosks, store signs and wall murals are painted with stencilled letters and crazy patterns straight out of a pop art show. In Cap-Haïtien, Haiti’s second-largest city, the houses are all turquoise and apricot, with white gingerbread trim.

2: Street life

Everything in Haiti happens in the street. Every square inch of sidewalk and roadside is taken up by food carts and street sellers. Women carry coolers of soft drinks, baskets of fruit, even potted plants, on their heads as they weave their way between tap tap buses. Carpenters, shoemakers and hairdressers set their tools on makeshift tables in front of their houses and go about their day’s work. At the corner, there’s a lineup for barbecue chicken sizzling on a drum-can grill. It winds past an ad hoc antique store selling armchairs in the style of Louis XV.

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