Uncategorized Posts

Holding their breath in Haiti

While the numbers have yet to be determined, the prognosis is not good in Haiti. When I heard of a possibly catastrophic quake last night, my heart sank. Then came the email from my contact at CARE: “Are you down in Haiti yet Jake? If not are you ready to go?” But instead I’m headed out to West Africa on another shoot with BRAC, and somewhat relieved I won’t be on such an intense, heartbreaking assignment. Port au Prince’s landscape will be forever changed by last night’s earthquake, with everything from the Cathedral de Notre Dame to the Presidential Palace razed. When considering the way most Haitians struggle to get by even without natural disaster, yesterday’s events seem even more unimaginable.

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Touchdown Cameroon

After 32 hours of travel since leaving Richmond, I’ve arrived in Cameroon. It’s my first foray into West Africa and my first time back on the Continent since April. The landscape and flora are similar, but I was hit with a wall of hot, thick, damp air upon disembarking from the plane. Humidity of this magnitude is something I’ve never experienced in Africa before. The East, the South, the center are all blessed with mostly agreeable climates. The latest U2 album (to be released next week) has made for an unbelievable soundtrack through the clouds, above the Sahara, and over the green hills of Cameroon. Sorry Bono, I got a pirated advance copy.

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And the nominees are…

Last year’s post about my all too close encounter with a machete in Kisumu, Kenya (and the photos to prove it) has been nominated for an RVA News blog award today. RVA News is my hometown’s source of news, entertainment, sports and community events. Click on the logo to vote. Move over Mamma Mia!. Winning this award would be just one step towards my dream of turning this harrowing story into a Broadway musical.

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