Monday, February 01, 2010

Drugs and Karaoke (Yesterday's Post)

I thought we would have time to go explore today, but instead we had to go through all the supplies and divide the drugs into predispensed packages. This was to make it go faster in the field tomorrow. And after counting pill for 5 hours I can see how it definitely would have decreased the number of people we could treat if we had to do all the dispensing in the field. So about 20 of us from 5 different countries sat around some tables on a patio and divided doses of about 20 different drugs: from ibuprofen to amoxicillin to mucinex to multivitamins. It was not the most fun thing to do, but we had a good time. Most of the fun was had at the expense of the only two Air Force personnel among the 97% Army personnel. There was much friendly banter going on. For example I tried to bring up a discussion on how the AF has changed it PT (Physical Training) test, and the Army Sergeant next to me said, without skipping a beat, “Did they make the walk shorter?” Funny Funny Funny. We looked like a drug cartel cutting and counting out a bunch of illegal drugs in some back shop.
Once we got the supplies sorted and split into 7 groups for our 7 treatment days, we loaded the truck and returned to our rooms to wash up for the icebreaker social.

Insert some background since some if not all may be clueless as to what I am doing in Thailand: It is a mission called Cobra Gold for the Thai people in some remote areas. What I didn’t know is that it is a multinational force. We have physicians, dentist, nurses, pharmacists from the US, Korea, Japan, Singapore, Indonesia, as well as Thailand. All from their respective militaries. So I stayed up late last night chatting with a doctor from Singapore and an optometrist from San Diego. Its pretty cool meeting all these people.

During our break this evening 2 of the other guys, who happen to be Mormon, and I got together and held our own mini Sacrament meeting. It was very special. As we held a little service I was struck by how the work we are about to begin is following the example of the Savior: We are helping the sick and afflicted, trying to heal them the best we can. Christ spent much of his ministry healing people like we will see here. It is a special mission we get to be part of.

Then we had a social where we got to know some of the newly arrived people as well as our interpreters. Each of the doctors get an interpreter. I think this is pretty awesome. Mine’s name is Pim. She is a very nice Thai lady with a lot of spunk. She immediately started joking with us and is scared of teeth/dental stuff. It should be a blast. The dinner was followed by some Karaoke and let me tell you, you haven’t lived until you have seen a Thai man sing and dance to a Thai country song. Me and two others stood to leave once someone decided The Titanic song was a good choice. What is the only thing that could entice us to stay longer? A tray of fresh pineapple. We finished them off and then left. They have this mixture of course salt and course sugar mixed with ground chili pepper. It is spicy and good. I put on both some guava and pineapple. YUM YUM YUM!

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