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06/24/2010

“Theme song”

20100624_smaller_dscf4574 Living in Haiti, I hear many different sounds on a regular day: babies crying, water splashing as people do their laundry, trucks passing by… In the midst of all these, the sound that stands out the most is the “theme song” of the water trucks in the early morning.

In Haiti, it is common that people who don’t have access to tap water buy water from the water-vending trucks. These trucks are common, and they usually come around with a familiar music that they play. Simply imagine the water truck equivalent of the ice cream truck music. Playing music to attract customers is nothing new, but what particularly caught my attention was their selection in music. In general, these trucks play either one of the two songs: the theme song of an academy award winning movie, “My Heart Will Go On,” or the year-round “Jingle Bell.” My guess is that these songs are meant to send us messages that “water supply will go on forever,” or “we wish you a merry day just like Christmas!”

While Haitian people may take these familiar sounds for granted, for me, coming from another continent across the Pacific, they are an intriguing piece of the Haitian life that captured my attention.

June 24, 2010 in Haiti |