KUSHE from Sierra Leone!
The West-African adventures keep getting sweeter and sweeter, and it's only been 2.5 weeks! I am continuing to become more comfortable with ship life, enjoying more excursions off-ship, and building deeper relationships with my patients everyday!
|Fighting the crowds|
|The Cotton tree!|
I literally almost got wonked in the melon by a poda-poda mirror, but was saved by a kind man pushing my head out of the way! After about an hour and a half, we finally saw light at the end of the tunnel and saw the immensely tall and beautiful cotton tree towering over the chaotic city!
After we saw the tree, the excitement was gone, and we didn't know where to lead our adventure next, when all of a sudden a kind young gentleman came out of nowhere and started talking to us! (I exaggerate when I say "out of nowhere"..everyone tries to talk to the "white babies"). At first we tried to shake him, but he said he had the day off from school, and would like to show us the government buildings, so instead of fighting it, we decided to see what would come of it!
|Freetown view from the mountains!|
|Sierra Leone's parliament building|
I asked Frances if we could see his church, and he was very excited to take us down the block to meet his pastor and pastor's wife. They were soooo sweet and welcoming and treated me as though I were a long lost daughter. Tomorrow I plan to attend service at their church and I am very excited to get involved in their community! Look for updates later :)
|Pastor Amara's church|
Last week I had a sweet lady in her mid 30's who had a huge goiter. I had her all prepared for surgery, and took her down to the OR (or "operating theater" as they call it here!). I was embarassed to realize that I hadn't gotten a pregnancy test on her before surgery, and was about to run get a test kit when she stopped me. She said there is no way that she could be pregnant because after she got this huge goiter (literally the size of her head), her husband left her, which has been over 5 years. The OR nurse and I decided we would trust her rather than make her feel worse and force her to be tested. It was so sad to hear her stories because the life of a single woman is not easy here in West Africa. People are rejected by their families and villages when they have these large deforming tumors, and it is just heart breaking to see what happens to them, but at the same time it is so rewarding to know that we are able to help.
|Our private paradise island!|
|A view of our room|
|The veranda where we ate|
They asked us when we wanted dinner, and made us an amazing candle lit dinner on the beach, where we enjoyed freshly caught barracuda and rice! Prepared and served by the cook himself. It was by far the best food I have had in Africa yet. That night we sat and watched the stars, brighter than ever, and to top it off we saw a huge dead whale float into shore! And mark it down, after only 2 weeks, I have crossed the Poop-barrier with my new friends! (for those of you who understand this, I know you feel my joy! and those who don't understand, please erase this strange sentence from your minds)
|My hammock bed :(|
After an incredible weekend of relaxing in paradise, making new friends, and exciting travel, Umar came back to retrieve us and take us back to the ship! More and more each day I am falling in love with Africa, and look forward to my next adventure and the stories I can share with you all! Thank you for your prayers and thoughts!
|Christina in our mosquito net bed!|
|Sipping bottled cokes in paradise!|
|Our beach entertainment|
Another amazing Sierra Leonian sunset
Prayer requests this week:
-we are starting a new round of plastic surgeries soon. We will be doing a lot of burn repairs, and Noma (flesh eating bacteria) repairs for people who have disfiguring and disabling problems that require extensive surgery and skin grafting. Pray that the surgeries will be successful and free from infection, as we only have 3 months to heal and rehabilitate them.
-For the old hernia and hydrocele infections to miraculously heal!
-For my time at the local church tomorrow, that it will be an amazing community I can become involved in!
|The sign says "Love from Sierra Leone!"|