The Creole progress is coming along, again thanks to Carlo, a former NPFS volunteer, and his website HaitiHub.

I believe I previously mentioned my amusement with my Creole book's strange choice in words in its vocabulary lists- particularly considering that there are only 14 lessons and therefore a limited amount of words that it prioritizes for us learners to know. I was surprised by the inclusion of the vocabulary word for Machete (manch├Ęt, in case you were wondering) as early as lesson 7, but today it got even worse.

Creole Made Easy has yet to teach me how to ask someone's age or any words for family members or even the words for "food" and "water," but the book seems to think I will be discussing planting more than talking about essentials to life. So this week's lesson gave me the words for foreman, row, nursery, deep, ground, and the verb "to harvest." The best (worst?) word was for the English word dibble. Dibble. It didn't help that the sample sentence the book wanted me to translate sounded overtly sexual. I had no idea what a dibble even was, much less why I would find the need for it in Haiti, so I did a little Google search and apparently it's some sort of pointy gardening instrument (although I'm sure a very sharp stick with a handle could be useful for a variety of things).
The dibble.

I even learned how one would go about planting a sapling with said dibble (see below for detailed pictorial directions!)

But if you want to get serious about it, the irony is that these words might actually come in handy in a place where more rudimentary tools dominate small-scale attempts (and failures, given Haiti's 98% deforestations) to farm. Given its climate and environmental challenges, Haiti probably needs more help with agriculture than a lot of other things. And it's not like they have fancy tractors to do it.

So I guess, upon deeper reflection, I owe Creole Made Easy an apology for laughing at its word choices. Besides, Erin said she laughed until she used the word for machete on a regular basis in Haiti.

I still would like to learn the words for food and water, though...

Don't lose sleep over it! Now you know how to use a dibble.


  1. It seems to be problematic. We used small improvised dibbles for planting minicuttings and softwod cuttings into rooting trays. Planting rooted plants by using dibbles is simply stupid.

    Alex Fira



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