I saw them again! On my way to find a motorcycle to give me a ride to Kolet for Theater of the Gospel a lady balancing her merchandise on her head passed by me, “They left.” I turned without fully hearing what she said, “Excuse me Madame?” “They tore down the club because they’re going to build a hotel there.” I never remember seeing the lady, “Do you know where they are?” “Port-de-Paix.” My eyes filled with joy as I smiled.
Today Jara needed to go to Port-de-Paix, I went along. I asked Wilmar, a dear friend and the one driving us to Port-de-Paix, if he could take me to Kay Raul to look for the ladies there. The new place for the ladies must be known because he said we could find them. After Jara´s visit to the bank we took the car, stopped it in the mists of the donkeys, wooden, portable kiosks and walked down a crowded alley full of women selling dried fish, kineps, garlic, shampoo and more. We turned into an even smaller alley and walked into what seemed to work as the alley sewer canal and out of a flimsy door came a figure of pure beauty, Ingrid. Her hair was wrapped with a scarf; one of her sleeves was under her armpit while the other barely clung to her arm. I couldn´t believe it. Neither could she. Ingrid, one who tries to hide all emotion, couldn´t hide the flush of her smile, “Luisely,” she affirmed, as if helping herself believe. She searched for chairs and went to find the others.
My skin filled with goosebumps as I looked into their eyes, laughing and sharing our stories of the past few weeks and the odyssey of finding them after thinking they were lost. I asked them about the change of quarters and of owner, “There’s less respect. The breeze doesn’t flow through, there’s no current of air, the owner charges 20 Haitian dollars per day, 30 on Sundays, when in Jean Rabel we paid 50 for the whole week. All the waste of the alley flows in front of the door. It’s filthy.” They plan on moving to a place closer to the airport until the hotel is built in Jean Rabel, hopefully in June. There, they say, their conditions will be better.
As I listened to them it seemed surreal. Anything asked in faith can and will happen, we were reunited. The conversation ended with hope of a sequel to the encounter. They walked us out into the alley. Ingrid with her eyes locked in mine allowed all her love to flow into me and thanked me. I continued with my eyes in hers as I walked through the kiosks until the chaos of the streets blocked the gaze.
I saw them again! Zaloa’s candy is now in the right hands.