Wednesday, February 6, 2008

24 hours

I have been in Liberia for over 24 hours. The past 24 hours have been rather busy. I’ve been spending countless hours in front of my laptop. AAhh.. Good thing I enjoy working on my computer :)

We arrived yesterday morning to the port of Monrovia, Liberia. Awaiting us was two African choir's as well as the Highest ranking Liberian Health official, Dr. Bernice T. Dahn.As previously mentioned I was working with communications and was able to enjoy (and sweat through) the ceremony from the dock while the rest of the crew watched from the ship. It was a little nerve racking seeing I have never really done anything similar to that before, but I thoroughly enjoyed myself. I'm always up for learning something new.

It feels quite comfortable to come back. I'm not shocked by the trash on the street or the crazy taxi's (I vividly remember the sensory overload I experienced during my first ride in a Liberian taxi). And I am excited about the ward reopening.Today, all the nurses reported back to health care services. We have all spent the past two months in various departments, like hospitality, food services, and crew services (cleaning). I had been working in the dining room, which I didn't really mind because I was able to move around, listen to music, and talk to people as they came through the line. Being a nurse on the ship, you are a bit disconnected to the rest of the community because you work weird hours and end up spending a lot of time on the ward, neatly secluded form the rest of the Africa Mercy. It was nice to work a schedule more similar to everyone else’s', it made my independent self (gasp) appreciate community living.

But today the nurses reunited and we started to unpack the ward. Which I assure you is no small task. As we sat in the ward for a meeting, I starting naming patients that were on certain beds in my head. Adorable Muhammad who was quite a player with all us nurses (he was a three year old who totally knew how to work a room :). Sassy Esther with her tenacious spunk and crazy platts. Hysterical Musu, with her contagious wide smile and her persistence that I was going to marry her brother ("My brother will have a fine woman, Meggee).

It will be fun to have the beds filled again.

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