I could probably just type that one word and be done.
Last night we tried repeatedly to start the online Accuplacer test. Internet in Haiti is nothing if not unpredictable - that is one thing I learned in the past week.
I got up before 5am this morning because sometimes the Internet works early in the morning. This morning it worked! I texted John at 5:15 and told him to get here as quickly as possible. He must have thrown on his clothes and run all the way, because he made it in under 20 min.
While I waited for him, I walked to the bottom of the hill (in the pitch dark) praying that one of the armed guards wouldn't mistake me for an intruder. I wanted to get audio/video of Haiti at night. If I ever figure out how to post video, I will share the night time sounds - pretty much roosters crowing and barking dogs. But I digress.
Knowing that we could lose our connection at any second, John quickly got started on the first test... after I had to log in approximately 6 times. Sigh. John was completely patient. "This is Haiti."
John learned how to time his answer submission to correspond with the most bars on the wireless router so the answer had at least a fighting chance of going through. From 9-9:20 I tried to log in after the page timed out (yet again). As my frustration grew, John just shrugged his shoulders and said, "This is Haiti." Can you sense a pattern here?
Throughout the day we had various brief visitors - Bill, Jayson and even Pastor Jay. None of them could believe we were still getting Internet. Bill even brought us lunch so John could keep going. Every time I asked John if he wanted to take a little break to clear his head, he was not interested. He was one focused test taker!
We had a steady connection from about 2-5:30 when John finished the last question. I am pretty sure he was wearing one of the biggest smiles I have ever seen as the final question was accepted and his scores came up. The actual test time was 8 hrs, 59 min & 38 sec....but our total time from log in until final log out was over 12 hrs - over 3 hrs spent trying to log in and keep pages from timing out. I read a 600 page book today. I played Angry Birds. I snuck out for 2 minute breaks. This is Haiti.
The results page was immediate - and we were so pleased with his scores!! When John called the man I hired to tutor him in algebra to tell him he scored 87%, I heard the yell through the phone. :)
John was invited to stay for dinner - it was just a very small group of us (5) but everyone was excited to hear about the test. I found out that everyone at FOMM had agreed to not try to go online at all today until John had taken his test so he could have every bit of whatever Internet we got!
The Internet rarely stays on all day in Haiti - and even more rarely has a strong connection for over 3.5 hours. Within a half hour after John completed the final test, none of us could get back online. At 7:30pm Bill just gave up - it had been out for almost 2 hours. I am getting a weak signal now at 9:15.
I am sad to be leaving in the morning, although I miss my family and am anxious to see them! I have made more Haitian friends and look forward to seeing them again.
At this point, we will be getting the final paperwork together for John's dossier and then it is up to the US embassy! I will likely need to return to Haiti when John has his consulate appointment. There are still many hurdles to jump, but we are on our way!
John taking the reading comprehension test at about 6:30am - he scored a 93%!!
John after he submitted the final question - pure happiness!