Have you ever felt like you really changed someone’s life for the better?

He asked with the most humble voice leaning cautiously against the post of a grass-roofed tiki-hut, “May I ask you a question before I go?”

-Of course

“Someone told me once when I was little that it is wrong to stand next to a white person. It has never left my mind. Is that true?”

-No, not at all.

“I see that when I talk to you last night it was okay. So I thought maybe it wasn’t true.”

-It’s not true. The world is changing. Maybe for the older generation they thought that was true, but it is changing with us – the young people. When you have kids I don’t think you’ll tell them that.

“I won’t tell them that.” And he shakes his head no with passion and in deep agreement.

-We are changing things. The world is getting better.

“Now that I talked to you that is out of my mind.” He looks seriously at me with honesty and makes a motion with his hand as if pulling a long-engrained thought out of his mind and tossing it out forever.

—– a conversation between Tony and Sarah in Mole St. Nicolas February 4, 2010

Tony and Sarah



  1. Marie E J Sharon Said:

    I am so glad I found your blog. I am fascinated with your field. Most of all I want to thank you for the invaluable work you are doing for my country Haiti.
    I am out of breath following your fast pace movements on the island, knowing how bad the roads are and the lack of modern accommodations in some of the remote places you have been.

    From the bottom of my heart thank you for the work you are doing and for “changing someone life for the better”.

    The world is changing that is so true. Hopefully life for the Haitian people will change as well for the better this time.
    Thanks again

    • haitigps Said:

      We are so glad to hear your positive response. It really means a lot. Thank you so much.

  2. Deborah Freed Said:

    Andy and Sarah,
    We watch your every step with eyes wide open, from the heights of the rickety ladders, to the grounding of the hard science, to the depths of human emotion. Thank you for taking us with you. I read this last entry out loud to my three children, ages 9, 9, and 10 and we talked about how many different ways one can make a difference in the world. We know that there are probably 100 stories to tell for each one you write, but we thank you especially for this one tonight. Who knew when you studied geophysics that it would take you to such a place and time and feeling? All of the works you are doing in Haiti are good works. May your gas tanks not run dry, may your tires never tire, and may you come back to us stronger and wiser and with more to share, even if it takes a few small bribes to get it done.
    Thank you,
    Deborah Freed

  3. Jerry Cook Said:

    Hello friends! What day will you be leaving Haiti? Also we wanted to know how is your supply of lollipops?

  4. Jerry Cook Said:

    Is there any racial tension in Haiti? If there is, how does it affect the work you are doing? We were wondering, did you watch the Saints win the Super Bowl?

    The Seventh Grade Class

  5. Jerry Cook Said:

    What are you enjoying most about spending time in Haiti? Are you Colts or Saints fans? Are you afraid that there will be another earth quake while you are there? Has your research revealed anything new so far? Do the Hatian people know much about America, and how is their culture different from ours? Do you plan keeping in contact with any friends that you meet in Haiti?

    From Science 2

  6. Jerry Cook Said:

    Heyyyyy wassup?
    GO SAINTS! Who dat?
    How has being is Haiti changed your perspective on life? Have you heard the Help Haiti song?

    The Seventh Grade Class

  7. […] I was particularly interested in the second; It is very pleasing to know that at least one native will likely take these skills back to a country that so desperately needs them. I’ve been following NSF Geophysicists In Haiti, and was quite moved by this post as well. […]

{ RSS feed for comments on this post} · { TrackBack URI }

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: