Jambo from Kijabe!

We have just wrapped up another exciting week in Kenya!  Our week started off with an African adventure full of beautiful sights, wild animals, and great hiking.  Then, we spent the rest of the week working in the “theatre,” which is becoming more familiar now J

This Sunday, we joined with Gretchen, a surgical resident from Vanderbilt, to see what Kenya is like outside of Kijabe.  We woke up early in the morning and drove about an hour to Lake Naivasha and took a boat to the Crescent Island animal sanctuary.  We were the first ones there and got to see all of the animals in their morning routine. There were giraffes, zebras, gazelles, wildebeests, and even hippos! 

Group photo at Lake Naivasha

Zebras at Crescent Island

Giraffe and baby at Crescent Island

Then, we went to the nearby Hell’s Gate National Park for the most beautiful bike ride I have ever taken.  We rode through the valley, which was the inspiration for the movie Lion King (we got to see pride rock!!) down to the gorge.  There, a Masai tribesman named Joseph led us on a very challenging and slippery hike.  He told us stories about his life, how he walks 15 km to work every day, speaks to the wildlife in his native language, and gave us information about the geology of the region. 

When we returned to the theatre for the second week, we finally started to hit our stride.  Now that we are familiar with many of the KRNAs, students, and staff and have learned where the supplies live, it has become much easier to get things done.  Also, we have embraced mid-morning “Chai time” tea plus some “chapatti,” a tortilla-like bread from the cafeteria, which has helped us survive until lunch at 2pm.  We have begun to cover 2 rooms each day, acting as attendings (or as they say, “consultants”) for cases and also performing blocks.  It is very satisfying to hear from the patients and the surgeons how much more comfortable everyone is on POD1 because of our blocks!  

Candid photo in the stairwell

Also, Dr. Newton has been around the hospital this week and is teaching us about the different regions of Kenya and their various healthcare needs.   It is so inspiring to hear from him and the lead KRNAs about their educational efforts throughout the country. 

Dr. Newton with all visiting MDs.

I rounded in the ICU on Saturday, then we wrapped up the week with homemade breakfast and laundry.  We have a washing machine, which is great, but no dryer so we took advantage of the first sunny day in a while to line dry our clothes.  Also, I got this picture of Allison, which was too good not to share.

Allison doing laundry.

More to come next week!