CLINIC DAYS 1 & 2. Because of the pressures of my very important job at the medical clinic (I’m basically the bouncer) I am getting a little behind in my writing and will combine days one and two. But first, I want to go back to packing. I found out last night that Carla may have sent around a packing list to some of the trip participants, but possibly not to all trip participants (me)(or I neglected to read it). This, combined with my procrastination, has resulted in my not having several important items, including food, proper water bottle, Purcel, tissues, hand wipes, sunscreen, soap, a proper hat, and several other items (I do have a sleeping bag and mattress pad however, just in case we might need them if, say, there is a nuclear war or something.)

So, what I’m leading up to, I wish to extend a personal and heartfelt thank you to those of you in Kansas City that packed our individual travel kits. I have actually really needed all of the items contained therein. Keep it up!

Day one – Monday. This first day was a test of our flexibility, but Carla’s well-oiled machine made everything seem easy at the clinic. We saw 56 people, using 3 doctors, one Spanish speaking nurse (Sue), an ophthalmologist trainee (Chester), a dentist trainee (Nancy) and a pharmacist (Betsy). Wow.

Unfortunately the construction crew went to the wrong town and didn’t end up actually doing anything. However, as Doug Orbaker explained, CEPAD’s mission is to train communities to help themselves, so our aid is limited to five year shifts, and then is moved to another group of towns. This way communities are trained to organize and work together for the common good. We are visiting a town in its very beginning year, and they are still kind of figuring stuff out. Luckily the construction crew is comprised of a bunch of shifty loafers (for example Bruce) (need I say more) and they pretty much enjoyed their free time.

Day two – Tuesday night Matagalpa. Had an exhausting day. Saw more than 180 patients. I overheard Carla saying something about a record being set, and if this isn’t a record I don’t know what would be.

After it was over, Lance and I took a walk and bought some homemade ice creme bars at one of those little home-based stores that dot the country; the cows it was made from were in the front yard. Local-based eating par excellance. The bars (well, baggies of frozen flavored milk) cost 7 cents each. If we don’t get sick we will definitely be back.


The construction crew reports that they are digging a latrine pit, a three-holer. They got more than halfway down in fact, and even worked through lunch. What a bunch of over-achievers! I’m afraid they are giving Americans a bad name. But I’m just keeping my mouth shut about it, since I hope to join their ranks tomorrow. 🙂

Well, I’m too tired to write any more. Very hectic day! Met some cute kids!