Recently my family and I shared some time on holiday out of Nepal. We caught up with some good friends of ours in Thailand, which was amazing. We were in a completely different place doing familiar things like swimming every day, which we miss here. And great because one of the couple who visited us is a surgeon and really graciously allowed me to dump all my medical debriefing on her. And being such close friends, we recharged in their company.
While we were away, we celebrated our one year anniversary in Nepal. It seems like we have only been here for a heartbeat, yet have been away from home forever. The kids have so many excellent friends and say they could live here indefinitely. Luke is fired up about what he is achieving on the engineering side, and my perspective of medicine, and surgical training has changed completely.
Another aspect of the anniversary is the reminder that we have less than a year before we leave. In fact, once we mapped out the time to move into our house, get ready for school and catch up with family and friends, we realise we only have ten months from now before we have to say goodbye. A new family has arrived in town fro just six months (our original plan) and they are desperate to experience all the cool parts of Nepal before they leave. I feel caught up in their enthusiasm, and feel the same.
On our return, in order to remind me what working in global surgery means, Tansen turned on a most nepal-worthy month of surgery. Unexpected CBD stones in cholecystitis, 16 year olds with severe pancreatitis, major trauma patients with multiple complications, and emergency laparotomy patients that grumble along, while pus and bile flow from drains and wounds, surprising us on ward rounds. I attended a burns course aimed at the developing world, which focussed on low cost burns management, an amazing opportunity. I was involved in an attempted reattachment of amputated hand. I delivered a friends baby. Nepal, you really find amazing surgical experiences.
I feel heartily and muckily welcomed back into my working life here, and raise a toast to the next ten months!