Wednesday, June 20, 2007

in a year, I did learn to spell awful...but things in jagdeeshpur have been quite the opposite

sorry it has been quite a number of days since my last update, but my internet time in the village here is quite limited and I have been processing so much that I don't even know where to begin...
John, Jamie, and I arrived in the rural village of Jagdeeshpur in rural central India after quite a day of travel. We took a taxi through the beginnings of a monsoon in Delhi-- seeing cars enjoy car-washes under the overpasses, people riding bikes blocking the downpour with their one free hand, and a group of men pushing a full size bus up a hill amidst the flooding. We then waited five hours through a delay, getting annoyed by a group of Americans making a scene of themselves complaining to security. Finally, we arrived in Raipur, the nearest city to Jagdeeshpur, and were greeted by the entire Weaver family (Joe and Sima, our two doctor friends, and their three adorable kids, kavya, maya, and joseph) who drove us the four hours to their house on a tiny two way road full of large trucks, cattle, bikers, tractors, and about anything else you can possibly imagine obstructing a road... During that time, we were able to discuss with them their experience living here in Jagdeeshpur these last two years, working in a hospital serving some of the poorest people in the world. since then, we have experienced more than we could have imagined...

I will have a long one coming very soon to cover the week, but after leaving a very mixed experience in Delhi, we have had a remarkable (though extremely overwhelming) time here in the small village of Jagdeeshpur. We have spent time in the hospital, shadowing our friends and talking to patients; we have done visits to surrounding villages experiencing incredible hospitality and warmth; we have ridden bikes down the crazy roads, ringing our little bells; we have played cricket with kids; we have eaten tons of amazing indian food and enjoyed chai and mangos more than anything; we have dodged scorpions and snakes and laughed at monkeys. I cannot wait to write thoughts and feelings on it all.

To come soon:
-experiences in the villages
-struggles with caste system and the extreme economic disparity
-discussions on our role here and feeling like we exploit this as a learning opportunity
-stories of being completely overwhelmed at the hospital with cases unlike I have ever seen
-adventures we have taken thus far

sorry that I keep promising things, but it will come soon. Thank you all for your patience.


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