Wednesday, May 5, 2010

baby orphanage, clinic, arusha and kentucky derby win!







It has been a while since my last blog entry, maybe because I was being lazy or maybe because I was just too busy to write. So…last weekend I went to a baby orphanage in Marangu (one of the places where the kili climbs start). The orphanage, Neema, houses babies from birth to the age of three. A church runs it and there are nuns that live there and work there 24 hours a day 7 days a week. The babies were adorable and Laura and I stayed until the children had to nap. Before naptime, however, the children had just been fed and two of them started vomiting all over the carpet. The poor sisters had to clean up the vomit while holding the babies and dealing with tons of other kids running around and crying. I defiantly want to go back up there and hold the children again before I leave.
I don’t remember if I mentioned this before or not but there were tons of small red bites appearing on both of my legs. Most of them were in lines or clusters of three and I couldn’t figure out where I was that I was always getting bitten so I found out bedbugs and some fleas but in lines of three. Of course – I got a little obsessive and put my mattress outside and sprayed the wood of my bed and switched into a different bed. After a few nights I took a mattress off of another bed and put it into my bedframe and haven’t seen any fleas or bedbugs but there are tons of tiny ants all over my mosquito net…that could explain the bites but I really am not sure.
I made two other posters for health education, one was about HIV/AIDS and the other was about STI’s in general. Rovina and I used the HIV/AIDS one for health education classes last week. The kids asked excellent questions and truly seemed interested in what we were saying.
Two new boys came in off the streets of Moshi one of which both parents have died and the other has a father but has lost his mother. They are both adorable and seem really sweet. On Thursday, the two new boys and two other children went to the clinic. It took FOREVER because it was super busy. Unfortunately, the four-hours spent at the clinic were right during the lunch hour. By the time the kids had their results back I was so hungry that I was struggling acting crazy. Anyway, we ended up heading back to Amani with the diagnoses of UTIs, typhoid and malaria. Before making it to Amani our taxi ran out of fuel at the bottom of a hill. Aside from my hunger, the rest of the situation was pretty funny…I was stuffed in a taxi with four kids and one random woman sitting on the side of the road waiting for our drivers friend to bring him fuel. Once we got fuel in the car and started up again, we passed a young boy (looked about 10 or 11 years old) walking with handcuffs and police officer. It was sad.
Also another one of the kids had an infected wound on his foot that he didn’t tell anyone about and he came into the office with a fever and really swollen lymph nodes. To prepare for the weekend I had to make over 30 mini envelopes of medicines to give to the weekend workers. I stayed at work late and while I was sitting in the office helping the boy with the infected foot a group of boys came storming in and I started screaming at them to leave then I looked down and realized they were all crying a body. Quickly I realized it was one of the little boys and he was crying hysterically because he had fallen and had a pretty big wound on his foot and on his shin. As I was bringing malaria medications to one of the boys I saw a kid go down on the soccer field…he had been kicked in the shin (we don’t use shin guards) and was in a lot of pain but luckily after a little while was doing fine. Also some other stuff happened earlier in the day but I don’t feel right posting it on here.
This weekend I went to Arusha for Anna’s birthday. It was a lot of fun and it was great to see her house. When I got there we went to a Kentucky Derby party because Anna’s boyfriend, Josh, works with a girl who is from Kentucky. Everyone had to wear a hat and we all paid 5000 shillings (about 4 something dollars) and picked the name of a horse out of a hat. The first place winner won 100,000 shillings the second won 30,000 and the third won 10,000. Guess whose horse came in second place?! Mine! I won 30,000 shillings!
After the Kentucky Derby party we went to a real rugby match. It was awesome because I have never watched rugby…let alone seen it live. We watched Kenya vs Tanzanian Twigas (Kenya won). Then both teams started partying like crazy (just like in the movie invictus…even some of the songs were the same). Some of the players stood on the bar and had to chug cups of beer in under five counts. They made one of the referees drink and he started vomiting while standing on the bar…gross. By the end of the rugby game I was exhausted and ready to go to sleep but it was Anna’s birthday and there was no way we could end it there. On our way to the next place we passed a bunch of sleeping kids on the sidewalk. Most of the kids recognize Anna’s car and some ran over. I saw two of the boys who had recently left Amani. One seemed fine and was totally with it and the other one was extremely high (I don’t know on what though) and he could barely even speak to me. Although it was nice to see them, it was upsetting to see them so drugged up and sleeping on the streets in the cold (it gets really cold in Arusha at night). We then went to a bar called Greek Club and then left to get pizza. The pizza place was closed but the chef opened the kitchen and made us each an individual pizza (delicious) but it took about an hour to cook so I kept falling asleep at the table while waiting.
It was great to see Anna and Josh and I was happy that I made it there for her birthday. On the way back when we got on the daladala to head back to Moshi there were tons of men standing around the buses trying to sell stuff, which is the norm, but then one of them stuck their hand in my window and grabbed my boob. I was yelled at him and slammed my window shut. I finally made it back to Moshi, after feeling really carsick on the daladala ride home.

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