The Grinder is a book that I wrote after collecting the stories of many individuals in my community of Mizak after the earthquake of 2010. It provides a glimpse into the lives beyond the news cameras of a number of interconnected survivors in the mountains of southern Haiti during and up to 2 years after the catastrophe. The sacred spirit of community, brotherhood, and solidarity is discovered by these people as each one tells their story of “what they lived” drawing them closer together to find a healing strength in their relationships to each other. I found myself there with them during and after the disaster as my own story got knitted into the fabric of the community.
Included in the book are images of artwork from artists that live in the area that creates the setting of the story. Many of these artists themselves have their stories told in the book. The Grinder also explores themes of religion and humanitarian aid as all who are affected search for answers but find only questions and search for help but find only greater problems.
It was my experience during and after the quake myself that really started to define my own personal perspective on aid and my approach to an international life of solidarity in this country. These are the themes reflected in many of the writings on my blog. In the book those first hand accounts of the effects of aid during the world’s greatest humanitarian crisis in recent history are shared and the humanity that truly defines who Haitians are beyond recipients of charity is explored.
The book can be purchased on Amazon or CreateSpace.
“I have not read any work that so effectively puts me there on that day and in the terrible days and weeks that followed. I can taste the dust and feel the fear of the people sleeping outside and wondering what might have happened to their loved ones and friends. The stories Rainboth tells of people he knows who survived the earthquake are testament to the resilience of Haitians and are, in my mind, timeless.” — Mark Curnutte, author “A Promise in Haiti.”