Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Hospital Visits (Day Twenty Eight)

     July 8th, 2012 - Kathmandu, Nepal
     You know you are in a third world country when driving to the hospital means a near death experience  When you walk through the streets, a car or motorcycle goes by and the person next to you says, 'Woah!'
     Today was our group's last day of ministry here in Nepal, but instead of joining them, Marissa and Deepak took me to the dermatologist at the hospital. My former roommate had found out that she had an external form of a staff infection, bacteria on her face, called impetigo. The day after the A-trippers left, I noticed a spot on my face and I knew that it is contagious. I talked to Marissa last night and we planned to go to the doctor today. My first hospital visit in another country!
     My day started as every day of my trip- quiet time and breakfast. I was thinking a lot about my future during quiet time, and the Lord just reminded me that He will guide me, He will provide for me and He will always be with me. He will never leave me.
     After the team left for ministry at the rehab center, for trafficked women, I left with Marissa and Deepak for the hospital. We rode a taxi to the hospital. The view from so low on the ground, in such a small space in the middle of insane traffic is cray. Cars are literally less than an inch from our car. When we made it to the hospital, Marissa reminded me not to touch anything and pointed out something nasty on the floor of the waiting room. It was so crowded and I felt like there was no order. Deepak led the way to a small room where we filled out a sheet of paper. then we found out that the doctor wasn't there and we needed to come back later. All the while, I was extremely anxious to hear the prognosis of what is on my face.
     We all climbed back into a tiny taxi and headed back to the hotel. Marissa needed to find an ATM so I went on a walk with her. We stopped at a paper store first and she bought some cards before we went in our search of an ATM. We walked down several blocks until I spotted one. Unfortunately, after Marissa swiped her card and put in her information, she didn't receive her money.
     So we had to go up to the bank and ask. They told us it did not work and we should try again. Instead, we kept walking, looking for another one. We came to an intersection and Marissa grabbed my hand, said ''let's be Nepali' and started walking into the midst of the traffic.
     I wasn't scared, it was actually really fun to be out with just Marissa and have freedom from the whole group. I exchanged $15 for the hospital visit. We finally found an ATM and Marissa got her money. On our walk back through the intersection we were 'Nepali' again. We followed a Nepali man and his actions. When he stopped, we stopped. When he moved, we moved.
     Once we were back at the hotel, we stayed in Marissa's room to rest. She got rid of things, to leave here in Nepal. I read and napped.
     At one o'clock, we headed back out to go to the doctor again. The taxi ride was again slightly scary. Once we arrived, Deepak led us right back to the same room as before. I paid 1,535 rupees (a little more than $15) and then waited for the doctor. While we were waiting, Marissa and I almost fell asleep. It is strange how we are getting more sleep here, yet we are even more tired. 
     The doctor came in, diagnosed me with impetigo and prescribed a medicine, a cream to rub on my face. He also suggested an antibiotic if the cream didn't work. It was a relief to know what it is and how to help it heal.
     Deepak led us to a counter, where tons of medicines were stocked. I suppose it is the pharmacy. My cream cost 120 rupees, less than two dollars. Cheapest medicine I think I will ever buy.
     After our adventure at the hospital, we climbed into another taxi and arrived at Deepak's house. Marissa and I sat in the living room while the maid brought us cold juice. After we drank our juice, Deepak asked us if we liked black tea. We aid yes, and then the maid brought us tea.
     What strikes me the most about Nepali people is how hospitable they are. while we sipped our tea, Deepak told us about the caste system, intermarriages between castes.
     The woman always becomes her husbands caste. But if an Untouchable (Dalit) intermarries, that person becomes an untouchable, and is an outcast to their home.
     It was nice to listen to Deepak explain the culture and religion. He said Western ideas are rising up among the young people, in that they don't want to carry on their parents/families vocation. He said it is actually a good thing, because they need to change from what they are now.
     After our juice, tea and talk with Deepak, we got in our taxi to go back to the hotel. On the way back, these two men on a motorcycle fell off, right in front of us. If it weren't for our driver's quick braking, we would have run them over. Another guy came to the two who had fallen off and it looked like a fight was going to break out. But everyone was honking and eventually they just drove away. Marissa put her arm out the window as we kept driving so she could inspect her arm, and she almost was seriously injured when the car came right up next to a brick wall. 
     Marissa joked that instead of people driving with their hands on 10' and 2', they drive with their hands on 10' and horn! So true. Everyone is honking all the time! When I get back home, I doubt I will remember what driving there is like.
     Back at our hotel, we ate lunch and ten went to our roms to pack. Packing always makes me a little uneasy because I am always wondering how everything is going to fit and if it is going to be under the weight limit! But everything looks like it will fit, and make it to India. Praise Jesus for His blessings on us!
     Then came the time to call home. I was really uneasy about it because when I don't call home, my homesickness isn't as bad, and I usually cry on the phone. Megan told me to write down what I was going to say and prepare to talk to them. I practiced what I would say with Megan and then she gave me the phone to call them. When mom answered, she was a little dazed because of how early it was there. (6 am on a Sunday morning). I told her I am leaving for India, I might have an opportunity to call or skype once I am in India, and that I love everyone a lot. She passed the phone to my dad and he said he loves me, hes proud of me and he looks forward to seeing me soon. I told him about my face infection, said I am fine and I feel great. Again I told them I loved them and then said goodbye. It was my best phone call yet because I didn't cry and they know I am doing well.
     At dinner, Sunny ate with us and shared our last supper here. He laughed hard every time he looked at Beka because he kept thinking 'goat'. Goat in Nepali is 'bekra' and both of our Beka's have been called goats!
     Bebe, our cook, ate with us and told us he married his wife when he was 13 and she was 24. It is crazy how young he was! I can't even imagine being married so young!
     We had worship tonight and then wrote down a list of things that have happened here in Nepal that I never want to forget.
     I never want to forget the things I have learned here. When I eventually go home, I want the things I have learned to change my life, the way I live.
      Thank you, Jesus, for what you have done here in Nepal!

     Note: I changed journals and there was no longer a 'Highlight of the day' section. So no more of those.

     My last day in Nepal. Oh boy, my heart is longing for that place right now. Break the chains, Jesus. Every last one of them.

Jesus, break these chains.

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