With rain in the forecast, we set out for Pueblo Nuevo hoping that the road would be kind to us. A few weeks ago they received quite a bit of rain in this area and so there are a couple of spots where it is a little tenuous getting through. There is one spot in particular where we were holding our breath all week each time we drove through because it was badly rutted and muddy and fairly deep. Ismael said each time that he hopes it didn't rain this week because we might not get through. So when it started to rain while we were in the village we began to wonder if we would get home tonight!
Each day is just so humbling! People feel so connected with us and are so grateful to us, while I sit before each one feeling I have so little to free then. Even just listening to their lungs and reassuring them that they are clear, or checking their hematocrit and telling them that they are no anemic brings a smile to their faces!
The best smile today was from a young lady who is pregnant with her 2nd child. She is about 26 weeks and I was able to so an ultrasound on he and see a little boy part (I am not always great at that, but this little guy was showing off). She was so happy and thankful and jabbered about lots of things. By the way, Anne, the lady who asked you to name her son came in today. You will be happy to know that little Randy is doing great!
My most humbling experience today was setting a forearm fracture with a scotchcast splint! A healthy man involved in a bike accident 3 days ago with obvious deformity of his forearm, and after a hematoma block and lots of reassurance, Porsche and I used traction and prayer to reduce it; while I held the arm, Porsche splinted it with a sugar tong. The man tolerated it surprisingly well, but I couldn't help thinking that we should be doing this in the OR under fluoroscopy! I just pray that he heals with adequate function in his arm and that this is not too much of a detriment to his health or his ability to take care of his family!
Kim saw enough ear wax today to last her the rest of the month. She also did a non-blinded study which showed that boys are much less tolerant of finger stick than girls in this village! Gary seems to be happy being Kim's scut monkey and showing off his latest technology!
Ed and the boys are making an amazing transformation of some old, previously useless desks. There are 16 desks that were just thrown into a room in the school and were in really bad shape...really not even safe to use. They have now removed the wooden desktops, seats and backs, sanded and painted the metal frames, and cut new wood for the desktops, seats and backs with a jigsaw. Tomorrow they will work on staining and varnishing the wood, and then screwing the wood to the frames. The children will have some good-as-new desks come January!!
We fired up the new stove today that Anne brought last trip. Although it took a bit to get going, and the rain tried to dampen our efforts, we cooked some Kids Against Hunger food fairly efficiently. We plan to put on a demonstration tomorrow for the people of the village and talk to them about how much safer and more efficient this would be to cook.
So you might have guessed that we made it back safely tonight...the muddy, rutted road allowed us to pass, with a few prayers and a push from above...
We are truly so blessed!!