After about 48 hours of travel, we finally arrived at our destination in Zinvie, Africa for our medical mission with the Bourget Foundation. Exhausted when we arrived we unloaded our gear and picked our rooms and a short time later off to bed. It is 28 c at 1 am in the morning. In spite of the temps and no Air conditioning, we slept very well. The day for me started with a group of us heading to the hospital to prepare the anesthesia machine the foundation purchased for this mission. All things smooth so far,……………….
We are all wearing scrubs in the hospital so we all look somewhat official. It has been realized that many people think that Dr. Bourget and I look similar… A brother from another mother kind of thing. So..I walked by a recovery room in my scrubs…a lady in a recovery room summons me to the room as I was walking by and asked me to consult in French. Being polite, I went in to assist and a lady asked me to look at two injuries, one and ankle and another a breast issue Without success I told the lady that I am not a doc. She didn’t understand what I was saying and proceeded to remove the garments of one patient to have me view the progress. I Rubbed her leg and she seemed fine……….THEN!!….the lady pointed to me to another patient who was having issues with her chest, so she proceeded to remove her top to have me consult………..then I realized they thought I was Dr. Bourget. Well, lets just say it was an experience, The Doctors on this mission got a kick out of the story.
In the afternoon we visited a village named Lokpo. This was an incredible experience and heartwrenching at the same time. This was a traditional African experience you can find, We walked for well over an hour on dirt roads to get to a place to get on an African River Boat,….when I say riverboat, I mean a large canoe that took us up the river to the village. Before we got on the boat we saw kids playing in the fields….they came to us to see what we were all about. Dr. Bourget pulled out a soccer ball and kids came from everywhere to get a chance to kick the ball. Then the older kids started showing up. We gave them a separate ball with the condition they would leave the smaller kids with their ball. All agreed I have never seen anyone so happy to receive such a simple gift. Really makes you think. Both Doug and I both had tears when we saw how much the appreciated the new soccer balls. This place is definitely life changing
We moved up the river to Lokpo where we arrived at a very typical village Wow they were so excited to see us, We played soccer with the kids and had a blast you need to check out the blog on the website and facebook page to see the videos. By the end of the visit the children were chanting Louis Louis Louis I don’t do justice when describing this day. So far this has been life-changing,
My Nick Name is Dr. Dave. More on that later.
The people are so friendly and genuinely appreciative of what the foundation does. As I write this, we were not supposed to do operations until Monday. It is Sat and we have an energy surgery to do this evening
Stay tuned we have some great stories to come.