One Month

Exactly one month and an five hours ago, I stepped off the puddle jumper into the all-encompassing humidity of the Caribbean. Since then, I have gotten to know so much about this place and yet continually discover incredible gems of island life. On Sunday, the volunteers hopped in two pick-ups and an SUV and drove the approximately 20 miles to Camp Bay. This trek took an hour due to the windiness of the road that snakes along the northern coast towards the east end of the island. The ride made for some gorgeous views! The island gets so thin on the east side that we would see the ocean on one side, make a turn, and see it on the other side too.

We visited a wonderful clinic supporter who lives in a lovely, open beach house in Camp Bay. All of the walls of the house are painted canary colors–sunflower yellow, aqua, magenta, and avocado green. We enjoyed a tasty spread of potluck food, lounged in the many hammocks strung around the patio, and swam. Here are some views of the spectacular scenery there:

This week, I have been working with Robert, our wonderful PA, and Dr. James, an incredible resident. Truly, the providers here are so inspiring and knowledgeable. I hope I pick up some of their wisdom by osmosis! Already I feel like I’ve learned so much. I have gotten to translate and assist James on many prenatal visits in the last three days. Yesterday I got to do an ultrasound! James and I were having trouble finding the fetal heart sounds using a Doppler, a little detector that amplifies sound. We decided to do a quick ultrasound to check the baby. Turns out the little tike’s head is positioned on the right side of the mother’s abdomen, and it’s back is against her pelvis. It was tricky to detect the heart rate via Doppler because the best parts of the body for detection, the head and back, were hidden by the kiddo’s limbs. I got to visualize the four heart chambers and the rest of the little belly! I also got to measure the cranial diameter to estimate the gestational age. It was breathtaking.

Last night, we had to say goodbye to lovely Jenna, who flew back to Michigan today after spending a month on the island. We miss you already! Here’s a shot of us enjoying a celebratory round of Monkey La Las:

Michelle, Jenna, and I with our last Monkey La Las together 😦

I can’t wait for my parents to arrive in a day and a half! To sign off like an islander, “¡cheque!”


3 thoughts on “One Month

  1. Hi Hannie,
    I just love your vivid descriptions of island life. Almost as good as being there – not!
    I’m so ecstatic that you are getting to work with such amazing folks, doing amazing things!
    You’re Mom is playing Words With Friends at the airport right now as she waits for take off! You’re going to have the best time!!
    Hey, what kinds of animals, birds, reptiles have you seen? I know you’ve probably seen lots of iguana.
    Keep us all posted about your ventures with the padres! Love you! Auntie

  2. I can’t believe you are halfway! I just caught up on reading your blog… sounds like you are loving the island life! Wish I could visit you ahh 🙂 un beso!

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