Sunday, July 10, 2011

Santo Domingo

Early this morning Patrick, Bethany and I left for Santo Domingo. There is this very strange problem that has developed for many NGO's working in Haiti. Right after the earthquake, there were no businesses open. Many organizations were coming to Haiti to help, but it is pretty difficult if you don't have any truck. The big organizations snatched up all of the rental trucks. They just leased them for 1-5 years right off the bat. That left no options for the little guy. So, many of us bought trucks from the Dominican Republic and drove them over to Haiti. At the time the border was open. There was no problem going in or out, and, there was no problem driving a vehicle from the DR. Now, fast forward 3 to 6 months after the earthquake and I discovered that we had an almost impossible time of buying new tires for our truck. All the NGO's with their leased trucks were snatching up all the tires! Then, just about a year later---guess what? All of the registrations and insurance for the many DR trucks were expiring. Haiti now is demanding huge fees to matriculate the trucks. For example, for the Toyota that was donated to us--they want over $12,000! I decided that I wasn't going to pay that much. We will keep it registered as a Dominican truck. Now, in order for us to drive the truck in Haiti we have to pay for authorization which is $300/month. Uhggg... Anyway, to make a long story short--I have to do the title transfer and get insurance here in the Dominican Republic. So here we are... having an adventure. None of us are Spanish speakers but we are getting along. Rebecca

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