December 21, 2012

My first solo adventure

Right now I am sitting in the air conditioned Peace Corps office in Chimoio.  That has a toilet that flushes.  Man, I am feeling spoiled today.  Anyway, I am here in Chimoio because I had an appointment this morning at the clinic to check out some back pain I've been having the past couple of days. Of course, I know that this back pain is probably never going to go away, but it was getting hard to breathe there for awhile, so I figured it would be best to get it checked out.

So this morning I made the trip into Chimoio from Messica.  Alone.  On a chapa full of Mozambicans.  When I got to the chapa stop in Messica at 7:00 this morning, there was an almost packed chapa waiting to head out to Chimoio.  I got the seat right by the door (with a window), so I thought it was a pretty good location.  Boy, was I wrong.  Turns out that whenever anyone had to get out, I had to move.  Also, whenever they wanted to cram a couple more people in, I was the one that had my little leg room robbed from me.  Whenever I thought there was no possible way that anyone else could fit in the chapa, I was proven wrong.  It was quite incredible, really.  Like I've been telling everyone I have talked to on Skype, you don't know what you've got until it's gone.  And when it comes to transportation in America verses transportation in Mozambique, whoa is that the truth.

Anyway, so after about 45 minutes in the chapa, when I was stopping to let the guy next to me out, I realized that the exact place where we were was about a 2 minute walk from the Peace Corps office.  So that worked out well!  Then I proceded to waste time on Facebook and such when I was waiting for PC staff member, Ofelio, to take me to the clinic. 

Upon arriving at the clinic, I realized that Ofelio definitely wasn't going to be translating for I had to figure out how to say everything I wanted to in Portuguese.  So that was a fun realization.  They took me back to get my weight and I promptly heard "Oh, you weigh a lot," which is always super awesome to be told.  They took my blood pressure, and then I waited to see the doctor.  The doctor ordered some x-rays and a blood test, and I was there for approximately 2 hours to have all of that done.  I was pretty proud of myself for communicating everything correctly (mais ou menos) and the doctor couldn't believe that I was 21 years old, from America, and living in Mozambique.  He told me I am very courageous. :)

Anyway, I got my x-rays back and the doctor told me he sees where the problem is, but I am still waiting for the results from the blood tests.  I have to go back to the clinic in about 20 minutes to see if they've drawn any conclusions.  I don't know what the outcome is going to be, but today's been quite the adventure already and it's only noon.

Also, super exciting news!  Almost all of the central Moz 19 volunteers are meeting in Chimoio for Christmas, so I'll be able to see everyone and hear how their sites are! I am so excited.

It doesn't feel much like Christmas here, but hopefully once everyone gathers in Chimoio it will feel a little more Christmasy.  Everyone eat some Christmas cookies and drink some apple cider/Starbucks for me...