Each year on the 16th of July, thousands of people throughout Haiti and the diaspora make the pilgrimage to Sodo ( Saut D'eau) at Ville Bonheur to bathe in the sacred waterfall. Some believe that the Dahomean Princess, Èzili, sometimes appears in the waters to bestow wishes upon her devotees. Others believe that the Virgin Mary, mother of Christ, once appeared in a palm tree near the waters in the 1840's, after a powerful earthquake, Levennman, shattered the mountains, and created the waterfall.
Some make the pilgrimage faithfully every year. As one pilgrim explained to reporter Alice Speri :
"People feel happy here, after so much stress they finally have a place where to put their problems...It's like when you have a problem and you go to a friend. Even though your friend can't help you 100 percent, you feel comfort anyway. It's better than keeping it all to yourself."
In North America, Niagara Falls, which is shared by the United States and Canada, is the equivalent of Sodo. Each year, 14 million people from throughout the world make the jouney to the gigantic waterfalls. A boat ride and a cave behind the falls gives visitors a chance to come as close to the waters as possible.