It took us 2 years, but as of August 13th, we have been back in Kalukembe (Caluquembe with Portuguese spelling). We are sending a little update today from the provincial capital of Lubango. We are still without internet and are working on setting it up in Kalukembe through a vendor here today.
Some things gladly have not changed at Kalukembe: certain clinical colleagues are still here, persevering under increasingly difficult circumstances. For instance, government budget cuts fell hard on the health sector and procuring medicines and materials have gone from "very challenging" to "insanely challenging." We are quite inspired by the dedication of our nursing colleagues enduring with what little they have to work with. They work with the purpose of serving God and caring for the community. One of our colleagues is Gideon, a nurse clinician working in outpatient department. He laughed when i asked him how many years he's worked in the hospital. He answered with one word: "Muito"--"many."
Some things sadly have not changed: water for the hospital and home remains scarce. The most recent bore-hole is from 1976 and hits more mud than water. We still operate with barely any on the wards and in the operating room. Anyone like to guess nosocomial (hospital acquired) infection rates?
There are a number of things that have changed in the last two years and other things we just didn't know about when we were here in 2013, both nationally and locally as well as in church involvement in the hospital. But for the time being, we are glad to be settling into a spacious house and a big area to explore. We have a lot to be thankful for. People have been welcoming us generously with smiles and friendliness towards Zeke, Eli and Naomi. We hope they will have good friendships here and grow into wanting to serve God through serving others.
Like most parents, i hope our children will be better people than we are. i hope they love more, care more, laugh more, worry less, care less about financial security, and know more about fixing cars and incubators! The other day, Zeke asked if he could go into the maternity ward with Priscila because he wanted to help the ladies "push out their babies!" With so much obstetrical sadness (e.g., we cared for women with uterine rupture, eclampsia, hand presentation with internal extraction, placental acreta and a septic head entrapment that ended in maternal death on top of 3 infant deaths in the same day this week), we hope those babies come out--alive!
|It's negative! And it's probably not what you're thinking! This is a rapid Malaria test for Eliel when he was febrile and with diarrhea and vomiting.|
|Like some watermelon?|
|Church girls at our presentation ceremony|
|Getting interviewed by provincial TV at the presentation ceremony. Do i really know enough Portuguese? Well, from what i gathered, i was asked if i thought it was wise to wear helmets when participating in the running of the bulls. i said yes.|
|Audrey Henderson reading and being a wonderful grandma to our boys. We are so thankful for Norm and Audrey in opening their home to us while we were in Lubango for a month!|
|Our home in Kalukembe|
|More beautiful than ever.|
|The nursing school 3rd year students had exams this week. These chickens were breakfast for the examiners. Talk about "farm" to table service!|
|exploring the termite mounds in the forest|
|i suppose i won't be telling Eliel to stop making mountains out of ant hills|