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Haitian Blues

Haitian Blues - Photographer Max Leu

Location: Treasure Cay, Abaco, Bahamas
Date: April 2018
Photographer: Max Leu
Home Country: China
University Affiliation: Alumni
Category: People
Award: Honorable Mention

"This man is a villager living in one of several "Haitian Farms" on many islands in the Bahamas. The village that this man lives in was once home to acres of citrus trees owned by farmers in Florida. The villagers, Haitians that left their own country seeking better lives, were allowed to live on the land while they worked it. But when an outbreak of canker infected the crops, the owners decided that it would cost too much to start again, and they abandoned the farm, leaving all of the workers without anywhere to go. Now, they still on the farmland, but mostly in shacks with no electricity or running water. The man in this picture didn't seem to care about any of that when I saw him. He sat there happily playing his guitar while I watched him, and he gave me a toothless smile the whole time. It really was an amazing sight to see the conditions that these people lived in and to know their story and still see this old man, who had probably seen a lot of bad days in his time, still enjoy the simple things in life like playing the guitar."

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