Sunday, March 16, 2008

a day at the beach

12 year old Emmanuel was selling dounuts his mother made. He sat by our group for almost ans hour and was a very sweet boy.

A platter of plantane chips for sale.
Karoline avoids being hit by the soccer ball.

Fellow nurses: My roomate Jen and my friend Karoline.

Someone recently asked me what the seasons were like in Liberia. I sort of laughed and told them there were two seasons: dry season and rainy season. And they are both just hot.

But dry season does make it a little easier to go to the beach.

Yesterday, I went with a fully loaded Land Rover to Elwa beach, which is about a 45 minute drive from the ship. I laughed because our group could have been the emergency medical team. Amongst us we had five ICU nurses, a surgeon, a physician, and an anesthesiologist. That's how it works out when you live on a hospital ship :)
Every experience here has a twist that makes it uniquely Liberian. I will provide several examples to validate my point.
1. We were sitting amid a long stretch of uninhibited beach when a group of teenage boys decided to play soccer directly in front of us. One of them was wearing only his bright white briefs. My poor friend Karoline almost took a soccer ball to the face a few times.

2. Two African dogs got into a viscous fight on my towel. Frida, a woman who runs a dental clinic and is a friend of Mercy Ships, was talking our group and had her dog with her. Another dog approached us and the two dogs started fighting and Frida was in the middle trying to break them up. It was a bit scary. I washed my towel.
3. Two 12 year old boys approached us selling home made food items which, of coarse, were carried on their head. Sadly, many small children are sent out to sell for their families. Sometimes they cannot go to school because they are needed to sell.

4. Another NGO group camped out next to us and we spent the afternoon making guesses at what country they were from and what their charity did.

At the end of the day I ate a large bowl of hummus at a one of the many Lebanese restaurants in Liberia.
Another normal abnormal outing.

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