Ready to fly the nest

Yesterday was a pretty normal, full day of home based care and office work. Nothing too extraordinary, but that’s okay. I’ll normal over terrible any day 🙂

In the morning, after a couple of rounds of ping pong, Braydan and I travelled to Linda with Sophie and Caleb, the two newer interns we were training, for our last outing together before we split up and go out in pairs and threes again. This time around, Braydan and I took more of a backseat approach and let them run the show. They did very well, and at this point they’re ready to fly the nest!

While in Linda, we went out with Andrew for about 2 and a half hours to see patients. Many of the patients needed to have wounds redressed, so instead of seeing the typical 8-9 patients, we only saw 5. We were going to visit 6, but the sixth one was completely drunk by the time we showed up (at 11:00 am mind you) and Andrew wasn’t having it. So the group returning on Thursday will be helping him, and hopefully he’ll have sobered up by then as well.

It’s kind of sad, but the more time we spend here, the less I am shocked by the poverty and illness that we see. I know it’s not the fault of the people, but I’ve definitely become a bit more calloused, which may or may not be a good thing. What I mean by this is that while I recognize that most people here are scraping by and if they have goods to sell, they’re selling them just trying to make ends meet. But at the same time, I’m not a fan of being approached, followed, and then guilt tripped into buying something. I kind of told off a guy who targeted us on our way to the grocery store last night because of this same approach to making a quick buck, and he was a bit shocked that I was “acting like he was harassing us.” Yes, sir, that is harassment and I’m done being friendly just for the sake of everyone else’s comfort. Of course, I don’t take this approach with patients in the least, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned besides the things I’m working on for the internship, it’s that I REALLY do not like pushy sales people that try to befriend you and then guilt trip you into buying something. It’s just not a sales tactic I appreciate, and I’m not going to pay for something I genuinely don’t want.

On another note, lunch was yummy, and afterwards we have a team meeting with Kath and Sjeel to go over how the internship was going and if we had any questions about what is expected of us. After the meeting, as interns we met up again to discuss how we wanted to format the lessons for workshops we’re giving to some 8th and 9th graders later this week. Here’s another thing I learned: too many strong personalities create a lot of opinions and not a lot of solutions. Most of us in the group have pretty strong personalities, and because of this, settling on one format and the topics that we wanted to cover took about an hour of back and forth and no one really feeling like they were being heard. By the end, I think we found a good format, but that was after a physically exhausting “discussion” that was similar to what I imagine a high profile business pitch meeting looks like. But we settled on a format that fits most everything in that we wanted to discuss, so I think everyone is happy.

A little later, we had a full African Impact team meeting to greet the newbies of the week, listen to a few announcements of upcoming activities, and then vote on the movie for movie night. Braydan brought about half of our movie collection to Zambia, so we picked a couple from there that were newer and people would probably enjoy, and after a close vote, Spiderman: Into the Spiderverse won out.

We ran to Shoprite after dinner, encountered the sales person that I pretty much told off for following us, and ran back to get the movie set up. It was really nice sitting out and enjoying a movie with a lot of other people, especially since the proceeds from the movie night go towards the Sponsor a Child project run by African Impact. Once the movie was over, we disassembled everything and decided to call it a night and went to bed.

So not a super exciting day, but productive and satisfying nonetheless. We’re breaking up into different groups for home based care today, so we’ll see how that goes. Until tomorrow, adios!

-Gabrielle Bezzant

Author: Gabrielle Bezzant

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