A Travellerspoint blog

August 2011

Travay anko...

I'm sitting in one of the consultation offices here at OSAPO. I've discovered that they have the best ever internet connection and so will bring my computer up here when I'm working! I just heard a HUGE ruckus outside, singing and yelling, a bit more than normal.....and talk about a "celebration of life" happening. There was a huge group of people, men and women, lined up on the road singing and chanting....and in the middle of it all was a casket. They were taking turns carrying it...and sometimes it almost was end up....and made me wonder if the "fellow" inside was strapped in cause he was getting one heck of a ride!!! There were smiles on all the faces and it made me feel that this person had been truly loved a lot! They've since carried on up the road.
I'm beginning to have a routine now.....Mon and Wed I come to the clinic at OSAPO and help with the surgeries. The teaching sessions for 5 nurses start this Friday. I've hired Paul to translate for me. I'm glad I had these few weeks to work alongside them and see how things get done here as it's given me a better idea of what they have to work with, what help I can give them, what they already know, etc. They're all wonderful to work with and have been helping me a lot with my Creole. Thank goodness for high school French as it pops into my head often....I'm still amazed when that happens! : ) We will get together also on Sat. so these weeks will be busy.
On Tuesday I go to the Pierre Payen Hospital as Dr. Jean Robert Servius operates that day. Miss Emylene is the nurse anesthetist and is glad for another pair of hands.
So it's looking like tomorrow is a day off and I might just spend it alone at the beach/resort! Sundays can be busy as I go to church....either at Canaan orphanage where I was last year or this Sunday I told the kids I would go with them to their church. That should be quite an experience as there are 19 of them!!!! Thankfully Sylvanie (nannie and general helper of everything) will also be coming.
I am still in awe of the job God has sent me to do here. My devotion yesterday was right on the mark (as always) as I was stewing about how to organize the teaching, did I have a good enough knowledge base, would I be a good teacher, etc.....and God had prepared for me to read in Romans 12..."Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you." That made me stop and think "who am I?" It's true that I have been very blessed with knowledge and skills and experience in nursing and so God has prepared me for what He is now asking me to do. And through my faith in Him and with His help, I will impart knowledge to these nurses....and I think have a lot of fun doing it!!! So how blessed is that!
The other scripture I was led to was from Proverbs 3:5...."Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding". God is not going to leave me toungue tied. I will not be alone! : )
Garret left yesterday so that's the end of the "little Canadian team". We worked so very hard together, learned a lot and laughed a lot....oh and moaned a bit too. Pretty long hours but we survived and have lots of memories for it. I wish they could all come back again real soon!!
I get around mostly by "moto taxi" and everyone stares cause I'm a "blan" and also ride single!! Mostly there are at least 3-4 Haitians on a motorcycle and sometimes 5 or 6!!! I pay extra but it's worth it. And last night, I even figured out enough Creole to book my "driver" to come back this morning at 7:30 to pick me up again! : )
So life is good. Home seems very far away and so I'm happy to see your names on my email. Vernon is still my home and my life....I'm just on a little sojourn right now. My plans are still to come back and teach at UBCO again this winter....I can't imagine being cold! It rained often this week but we went about 10 days before that without any. When it rains, it pours.....and then the road up here is almost unrecognizable. I will never again complain about Canada's roads. I'm driving now and actually did it in the dark a few nights ago! It is absolutely scary sometimes but I keep my eyes peeled for dogs and goats and kids and trucks and motos and bicycles and and and and! I don't drive fast and am always looking in my rear view mirror in case a bus or truck come up behind cause they don't slow down for anything!
Tonight Caroline and the crew at Canaan have invited me to join them at Club Indigo for kareoke night. I think I'll go and sip a cold "Prestige". Haven't had one in awhile so that'll be fun. I finally slept well last night. I've been sleeping out on the open porch since I came to Annie's and I think it was the persistent bugs....of any and all description....that were keeping me awake. No mosquitoes though. I've now killed about 5 cockroaches that fly all over and so decided enough is enough and moved inside. It is warm though and the fans quit about 10 pm when Kwam turns off the generator. I have a small battery fan that I then turn on low and it helps.
So all for now. I'm just going to send out an email to some of you to remind you of this blog address. Even though this is a "group email", please know that I think often of each and everyone of you. Take care....come for a visit!!! : ) You'll love the thick, strong Haitian coffee. I'm very thankful for the botum that Joel left!
xo Judy

Posted by jdouglas 13:39 Comments (1)

I am alive....and well

Dear all......I can't believe this is my first entry since arriving here August 4. So much has happened that I don't know where to start. I don't have as good internet access as I did last year. Right now I'm at Club Indigo using their wifi....tough assignment as it's right on the beautiful ocean with a gorgeous pool. As soon as I got here I jumped in the pool to cool off. It's HOT here! It cooled off for the first time yesterday after we had the tailend of Hurricane Irene hit us with rain. It was a wall of rain to be exact. We were up the mountain at OSAPO and had to wait it out as noone wanted to drive down the road. Thankfully we were in a car as often we've gone there on "motos".
Thinking over the past 21 days, I feel it's been a year!! I LOVED having Joel and Emily here and feel so very blessed to have shared this with them. Sean, you're next. I'll sell the house and bankroll you all for Christmas! : ) I'm so very proud of Joel and his medical knowledge base and his nursing skills. He is going to be a fabulous addition to the profession. And Emily, your time here was just too short. You took such good care of me and I'm thankful for every bottle of water you brought to me! I miss your smiling face and as I looked over the pics of you scrubbing the OR, I am so ever thankful that you came. You made a difference!
And what a delight to get to know Karlyn....Rachel's beautiful daughter! What a joy she was to get to know and I do look forward to another trip together anytime! Garret is still here as the hurricane warnings cancelled his flight on the 23rd and so he gets to experience a bit more of Haiti. Right now he's up in Borel with Sara and Peter at the Project Help site where the new water filtration site will be. I'm hoping to get there myself sometime this fall. Some of you met them when they visited the church this spring.
Our week with the surgical team from Nebraska from Aug 5-13 totally exhausted us all. We were the pre/post-op team from 0600 til usually 2200 each day. It was hard working in the heat, in conditions that were trying as they weren't familiar, learning the language as we went, laughing a lot, taking some pics, hugging the kids, trying to have an empty bed ready for the next post-op coming. Karlyn was a brick with her critical care skills and I know Joel and Garret learned a lot working with her.
We collapsed for a couple of days.....by sightseeing in the market, playing with the 19 kids at Annie's orphanage where we were staying, going up to OSAPO and meeting the amazing Haitian crew up there that I'll be working with this fall. WOW! is all I can say. God has been with us all the way, protecting us, soothing us, loving us, showing how we can help.
Em was the first to go home on the 15th....and I know Sean was glad to have her back. I'm sure it was tough on him being the one left behind to work and worry! Then Karlyn left on the 18th. She went into Port with Dr. Gardy after we worked the day at OSAPO with him. She stayed at his home in PAP and was treated royally before they took her to the airport the next morning. Joel then left on the 20th. God gave me a wonderful gift that day as we were given the day to spend together at a beach resort. It had been so busy up until then with events and people around and I truly loved having a few hours alone with him.....reminiscing and debriefing and loving our time together! Thank you God for the gift of my son! : )
I'm living at Annie's orphanage now and have even been given keys to the truck. I've driven a bit and have survived!!! It's absolutely impossible to describe accurately what it's like to drive here. At any one time there could be 4 vehicles coming at you on a 2 lane road and all of them honking their horns to clear the way! Enough said!!!!
And now sadly I have to go......my ride is coming soon. I pray that this will send. I'm having trouble with my email and struggled with it for the past 2 hours. Blessings to you all. May you all be filled with peace and joy in your hearts. We have soooooo much to be thankful for.
xoxo Judy

Posted by jdouglas 16:59 Comments (0)

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