Saturday, February 1, 2014

Screening trip.

I had the privilege and honor of spending the last two days in the interior, helping out with our last patient selection day.  A post with pictures and patient stories, including my one from this screening, will come later when the photos are released.

Photo cred Michelle Murrey.  I took the same photo and for the life of me can't figure out where it went...

We were screening at the hospital in Dolisie where I went last fall for an assessment trip.  Upon running into one of the nurses I had met before, we greeted each other again and then came this classic compliment and ensuing conversation:

Nurse: Krissy, Congo really loves you, you should never leave.
Me: Why do you say that?
Nurse: Well, you've gotten fatter since you came here to Congo! 
 
My desired response?  Honey, it ain't got nothin' to do with Congo and everything to do with Christmas cookies and cinnamon rolls for a month in the grand old US of A.  God bless America.

My actual response: Why, thank you!  Yes, I do love Congo.

(Note; anyone who has ever lived in Africa knows this is one of the nicest compliments, culturally-speaking, she could give me... you need to learn pretty quickly that when a local calls you fat, you can't get offended!  And the other thing is.... she's right.  No guilt either, those cinnamon rolls were amazing.  And if you live on the ship and are reading this... want to go running later?)

I was driving one of the three vehicles up to Dolisie and that road will really keep you on your toes... we counted 24 broken down trucks along the 4-hour route  My car had a couple of Aussies and a couple of Americans, and conversation ranged from ship stories to the fact no one in the car had ever been arrested to Australia going to war with New Zealand to get a state holiday (or was it the other way around?)

Photo cred Michelle Murrey

At one point this came out of my mouth:  A blind dinosaur with a razor blade near my carotid doesn't really interest me.  Prize to anyone (who wasn't there) who knows the story that involved that quote!

By Friday dinner, after an early start, long day, driving home, then waiting for dinner, I was exhausted and staring off into space... There was a TV on in the restaurant we were in and it had some kind of sci-fi futuristic show on.  Michelle and I then proceeded to have a rather comical discussion about the fact that in all futuristic dramas the characters are always in some kind of spandex-y unitard... and there are never any fat people in the future, so they always look hot in their spandex.  And thanks to Christmas cookies and cinnamon rolls, I will never star in a futuristic spandex-clad role in Hollywood.  Oh well.  (all of this while I was waiting for a four-cheese pizza)

For dinner Thursday I ate Ngoki which is baby crocodile, and wow, it was absolutely delicious.

I intended to take a picture before eating but got so excited about it I forgot.  So here's my half-eaten Ngoki. Try it someday, you won't regret it. 

The other thing that was quite quickly established was the men in our group were extremely high maintenance.  I think the ladies would have been content sleeping anywhere and eating rice and beans while the men?  Nope.  Thanks ladies, for being awesome.

So we went, we screened, we ate large amounts of junk and simple carbs, (maybe I should just keep it up and get the same compliment when I'm back there in April for training?), we came home, I crashed in bed and slept ten glorious hours.  It was a great trip and I was very happy to go, thanks team, and thanks Mercy Ships for letting me offer hope to the hopeless... and seeing the love in action.

~Krissy

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