Sunday, October 17, 2010

It's hard to live the life you choose

Blog post, so long overdue. I'm sorry... it's been a crazy busy month. It's mid October already! I've been here almost 5 months, which is crazy to think about. I've been getting a lot of the "do you miss home" question from the Mongolians, and how can I answer no? It's definitely the longest I've been away from home (even in college I managed to make it home once every couple months), but I think I've been fairing well for the most part. There's been good and bad days, as you all can imagine.

I can see this entry is going to be hard to do, since I did a crappy job of writing down what I have been doing. Poops. Honestly, it's hard to describe what my experiences are like... as I think I said before, there's something that happens everyday that bluntly reminds me that I'm in a totally different culture than my own. Most of the time those moments are so amazing to me.

Working at the hospital has been really great lately. I've been busy making my lessons, and in between and I have pretty lengthy conversations with my coworkers, Suvdaa and Tuya:

Coolest nurses in Mongolia.

This week has been a lot of talk about the differences between my old hospital and our hospital. Break rooms, med rooms, (I had an old coworker take pics for me), salaries, amount of doctors and nurses, etc. Our hospital has a lot of things going for it, for sure. There are so many good ideas, so much construction already going on, and lots of room for improvement that Suvdaa has already identified. I'll be working on a mini proposal this week to possibly get some respiratory equipment/ventilators and/or trainers to come to our hospital to train about them, thanks to Travis' mom (the volunteer who was here before me) who is part of a respiratory group. I'll let you know how it all goes. :)

Lately, I've been doing a lot of english teaching. I know you're saying "Katie... you're a nurse, what the hell!" but hear me out! That's what they want, I will give it to them. Most days actually it's a lot of fun. I've been teaching some english songs (one woman wants me to teach some Beyonce!). Saturdays and Mondays are my hospital english class, Tuesdays are Dava's class, on Mondays and Wednesdays I have tutoring with people, and Thursdays and Saturdays are the community english class. Yes... that means my only full day off is Sunday! This week I was really pooped so I decided this would be my day to myself. I had to turn down a couple people for lunches, etc but I think I deserve some reflection time. I did spend this morning on a 4 hour skype call with my dearest friends from home. :) That was really nice, thanks guys. :)
Ohhhh yummy food stuffs... holy crap mac and cheese!!

I got "the" package from my mom this week... with my lab coat! I started doing some observing in the surgery unit this week. Since I don't have scrub pants (pretty sure I tossed those old things when I left my old hospital), I sacrificed a pair of my pajama pants. I wish I had brought my camera that day (I got a new P&S, thanks mum!)... I looked a little hilarious, but cool- white and blue checkered pants, MSU nursing lab coat, my coworker's scrub hat and my black shoes from the black market in UB.

Also, big shout out to MSU for beating Michigan last week. Sorry mom!


 Poker night with the MTBA! ...also with a 3D Where's Waldo? puzzle

...Nema playing with my camera...

Mr. Potter, Satan, and Princess (Nema, Alex and Chimgee)... we didn't play poker that night, but fun with hearts instead. I still get your chips next time, Todd.

 My community English class! Enee is the first on the left, and she's one of the university english teachers. She translates my english babbling!

 Some of my students from the hospital!

MIKA! Who looks a lot like...

Pippin!! This picture on the camera cracked me the hell up... he looks terribly pissed to be having his picture taken.

 Homework assignment for you guys... what am I gonna be for Halloween?? Ahh maybe crazy cat lady? Also, I've put up a list of cool stuff you guys could send me. :) Love you all!

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