Manuelita Perrin and Banana Trees

Manuelita Perrin. Banana Trees. Saut Mathurin, Haiti. 2007

Manuelita Perrin. Banana Trees. Saut Mathurin, Haiti. March 19, 2007

Walking and talking with families, many of whom were farmers and associated with ORE, a frequent topic was education. By some estimates, over 90% of schools in Haiti are privately run. So, talk about education also became talk about money, and a steady income. Once again, I was struck by the interrelatedness of economics, education, health, land-use and government. Without a steady income, this child’s family could not afford to keep her in school. During this particular week, Manuelita, along with her other three siblings, spent their days at home, or running around with me.

I had just returned from one of my pre-dawn rambles and was on the roof, setting up the camera on a tripod for another shot, when a voice shouted ‘Pwadi, Pwadi, fe un foto mwen!’. Manuelita was running through some banana plants towards the house waving her arms, like leaf echoes. Okay, I’ll take a photo – and as I turned, gasp – I asked her to stop, no freeze!

Sometimes, the world conspires to make photographers humble by the gifts it gives us.

Hasselblad 500C/M, 80mm Planar lens, Fuji P400 film