She had to be no more than 12 years old. And as the water truck backed up, she was one of the people lined up with her empty large white bucket for fresh water. We had arrived in another one of the "Tent Cities" where people live so close together in poverty, in make-shift tents with narrow muddy pathways that wander throughout the tent city. No sanitation. Little food and no fresh water. This young 12 year old girl's beautiful dark skin made her bright aqua shirt stand out all the more and made her more visible in the crowd as she stood in the hot sun with her empty bucket...inching her way up to the hose with fresh water. Her 5 gallon bucket when filled with water would have been too much to carry on her own... and I looked down and grabbed the handle and offered to carry it to her tent. She led the way.. back through the muddy dirt pathways, past kids and crying babies, through the mud. I switched hands to carry the bucket as it got heavier. After a long walk we arrived at her tent and she showed me where to place the water. I smiled ..she said "merci" and I walked back to the water truck. I continued to help filling buckets for other people. about a half hour later I noticed that same young 12 year old girl looking all around with another empty bucket. She was in line but seemed to be searching for someone. When I caught her eye she smiled from ear to ear... she was looking for me. for me to come and help her again. I gladly did. This time as she led me again through the mud pathways back to her tent, she smiled and talked to a friend along the way and spoke in Creole as if to say "He's carrying water for ME". I arrived at her tent, I smiled, she did too, this time she looked at me, not as a stranger, but as a friend. Then she turned and said to me in Creole...I'm so happy you came to bring me water. My guide had interpreted for me. She said again. I'm so happy. My guide said "she's really happy!!" We smiled again I waved goodbye.. and passed a couple of kids along the way who shouted "hey you".
While riding back to our missionary house in Haiti, hand painted inside the bus are the words of Jesus... "I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink". It all made perfect sense.