Monday, June 11, 2007

International Dairy Smugglers or, How many Americans does it take to make a Haitian grilled cheese sandwich?

My sister is en route to Haiti as I type. She and a large group from their church are going on a 10 day mission trip. They were only allowed to take one carry-on bag, as their check luggage was being used for ministry supplies, vacation Bible school props, clothing to give away, gifts for supported children, and lettuce, cheese and sour cream.

You read that right.



Sour cream.

Over international borders, in checked luggage.

I thought this was illegal. On the customs forms, they're always asking if you're carrying agricultural products...

I'm dying to know if after the 24-hour layover in Miami, the contraband arrived without incident. They were already over-weight before they even got on the plane, and some of their bags were shipped directly on to Haiti...where I'm sure hungry screeners or drug dogs are having a heyday with the spoiling unrefrigerated dairy and the squashed packages of lettuce. But really, don't all the best food exporters send their delicate leafy vegetables out in duffel bags????

We've been cracking jokes about this for weeks. Our best guess is that they've got tacos on the menu. Though it's hard to believe that Haiti doesn't have lettuce or cheese or milk products that could substitute for sour cream. And why they planned Mexican food if the main ingredients were unavailable in-country is beyond me.

The answer to the title question??? We're still waiting on the answer. I'll update as soon as I hear from her!!!


Ali la Loca said...

This is by far the most absurd thing I've heard in a while.

I must know the explanation when you get a chance.

Riorose said...

The last time I cam through Rio customs a group of missionaries were being checked over. A box they checked was full of brownie mix. i should have referred them to my blog where I have a recipe for the worlds best brownies. no smuggling needed!