Cabin Fever Takes Hold in Haiti


(symptoms include: a dire need to make light of what is indeed a dire situation in Port-au-Prince, a flippancy induced by the inhalation of burning rubber, and a need to beg forgiveness in advance for any and all perceived irreverence)

Okay—it’s official—

I’m climbing the walls—

Not to mention ready to pull my proverbially-blonde-bob out by its not-so-proverbially-graying-roots.

Not a pretty sight.

Not only am I not able to leave the house and the confines of our small compound—fully equipped with two armed guards, two women madly in love, two dogs dearer that dirt, and, as of yet, no turtle doves to round out the group—but I’m at a virtual stand-still, as well.

I can’t get anywhere on the internet—anywhere that involves navigating beyond the breadth and depth of options offered on my Yahoo home page, options that include, but are not limited to, commentary on Oprah’s sexual orientation (she’s not gay), a discussion of what landlords won’t tell you (your neighbor is not his problem), an explanation of what makes stomachs growl (gases caught in churning digestive juices), and how to know he’s just not that into you (his arms are folded tightly over his chest)—if you really must know—clearly I’m well informed on all of these matters.

Then there’s the noise—yesterday multiple explosions and periodic bursts of gunshot—today the clamor of protesters close enough to hear, but not close enough to watch.  I’m sorry, but I simply must insist that all rioters on the Petion-ville side of Port-au-Prince, at least have the rioting decency to circle by my house once in the course of general looting and plundering—what any civilized plunderer wouldn’t have to think twice about.

Then there’s my neighbor’s music—

I can only say that it’s loud, Hispanic, and involves a lot of drumming.  And just in the last few minutes, they’ve added clapping to the percussion already well-represented in the piece.  The neighbors, too, could be suffering from cabin fever, as evidenced by an overwhelming urge to paddy-cake themselves to comfort.  But, actually, I think there may be alcohol involved.

Please be assured that the rambling nature of this rant is likely caused by cabin fever and won’t continue once the cabin has been put on ice, the international airport has been re-opened, and all aid workers have been evacuated and repatriated.

(Seriously, it’s really getting to me.  You probably should pray.)