Landing in Port Au Prince is the most beautiful visual chaos my eyes have ever seen. It’s a dust cloud. You drive in circles trying to find a place where you can enter the street you are heading to. Stone barricades pop up randomly and school girls walk around with crisp white ribbons bouncing through the dust. There’s a donkey, and Puff Daddy with a tribal design on his goatee hand-painted on a hair salon wall. Celine Dion smiles widely from the bus as it drives by. There’s a Nike sign in a leaf of the old-school Adidas sign and a big airbrushed Bible at the back end of a truck that vanishes into the dust cloud. There’s another Nike sign in the mouth of a Jesus sticker on the front light of a moped, which fits the entire family of four riding it. The school boys are so elegant, they’re like tiny elder men, walking very focused. Papayas and mangos are eaten over a kitchen sink, curved so the juices drip straight down. Metalworks on the fences resemble 80s geometric shapes, spirals and seagulls painted colorfully and window bars that overlap the fences, like a schizophrenic linear drawing, inducing nausea while I try to capture it all. Turning my head and eyes, following my iPhone display as we drive around.
The first thing I learned in Kreyol was: “Sak passe? Map boule!” which means: “What’s up? I’m boiling!(not chilling)”—and that’s exactly what Haiti is.