Today is a good day. I get to wake up and have coffee in the jungle.
I get to help make breakfast for 140 students that attend the school at Esperanza. We quickly make our way to the village and see that people from many of the outlying villages have come. Dr. Bee begins to speak with students and some family members about nutrition and pulmonary distress from smoke inhalation. While she says her two cents, a group of us begin to cook in the cabana next to the school. The wood stove is massive! My job is to crack eggs, mixed with flour and salt. After an hour or two, roughly 140 children are served an egg patty, oatmeal, fruit, and some vitamin fortified breads. Everyone is so polite and happy to be served their meal.
The children are thankful and fed and now must get back to their studies. We clean up after the children and family members leave, and make our way over to the hospital. Dr. Bee can only see a few patients before lunch today but she fits as many appointments she can into her time. She does not sacrifice time with any of her patients, she is a really wonderful doctor who wants to get to know her patients and thoroughly understand each persons needs. We head over to the kitchen to grab some grub and goodness gracious… There is a Peruvian chicken soup that blows my mind. It was different from yesterday’s chile lime soup but equally tantalizing and addicting. I can’t wait to figure out how to make it on my own. Lunch ends, and the afternoon begins to take shape. Some of the school children are out and are hanging about the clinic. We speak Spanish and English together. They are able to teach me some words and etiquette and I am able to reciprocate in English. The children laugh at my accent and love the interaction. As do I. With about three hours of light left in the day, Dr. Bee begins to teach the nurses and resident doctor about diabetes. Jorge, the on hand doctor, is very interested and respectful. He probes Dr. Bee with questions any chance he can. Once the sun starts its descent by the trees, we pack our things and head home. This boat ride home has to be one of my favorites. The river is alive with life around every turn. Rain trickles from the sky and is very constant. Birds, bugs, and fish fly into the water, around the water, and through the water. The rain cools and refreshes as we travel through rainbows and mist. Everyone in the boat is covered by ponchos and jackets, but not me. I embrace all the rain I can!
Considering the drought we’ve had Reno for the past few years, I want to soak up all I can. I head straight to the showers then to dinner. Tonight is grilled catfish and veggies, and I am filled to the brim. It is another early night for me after dinner conversations with some new friends from Denmark. They are very wonderful people as they are always smiling and giggling. It is easy to get lost in conversation for hours with such fantastic people. Off to bed and my head hits the pillow with a very reluctant thud. Before I know it, tomorrow is here.