Devastation Firsthand - An Earthquake Encounter This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

April 17, 2010
"Finally," I thought as we rode up the dirt road to our compound. "We are here."

It was Tuesday; only the fourth day of my trip to Haiti. It had been a long, grueling day of hard work, and I was ready to get back to the place we were staying, take off my sweaty clothes, and immerse myself in the not-so-refreshing pool.

As we were nearing the curb, a truck started coming down the road, and being the smaller bus, it was our duty to get out of the way. I would bet anything that at that moment, there was a mental sigh going through everyone's head. Who wants to stay in that humid, dirty bus any longer when we could've been outside already?

I'll answer that; me! Because at that moment while we were backing away from our compound wall, everything started shaking! Our bus was nearly tipping over, mangoes were falling from the sky, and I looked over, and saw that our compound wall - the one we would've been standing next to if we hadn't been backing up - crumbled, just a few inches from our bus. Right infront of our bus, a telephone pole fell, and it's wires fell right next to my window.

I'm not going to lie, by that point, I was a total wreck. I was sobbing and scared, terrified of what was to come. I wanted to go home, but seeing as our passports were stuck in a destroyed safe, and there were no planes leaving the country, we had a new mission; to help anyone and everyone in need.

Every day while riding through the streets, we saw dozens upon dozens of dead bodies in the streets. We saw bodies being pulled from the rubble, people dying in pools of blood, bodies mangled and twisted, and random appendages strewn about the roads.By Friday we could start smelling the bodies still trapped in the buildings. Outside the cemetery we pass each day, they had a truck digging mass graves. It had been like a battlefield, and I was just one of the few survivors.



My trip to Haiti was nothing like I had expected, and it is upsetting to think that all that I've ever seen there is in complete ruins, people I know are without homes, and children that I've loved may be dead.





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