Solomon had a new rendition of his daily song that included us clapping in excitement for all the different ailments that could possibly affect a person and cause them to seek treatment: head, chest, heart, belly, bowels, etc. He sure knows how to really get the crowd going.
Everyday at the clinic is an amazing day. For me, it always baffles my mind that you can easily see over 500 people in the span of 8 short hours. These are people who travel long distances to make it to these clinics and seek help. We saw 513 people today and because of the weather, it was a slow day.
One such man was a return customer from a previous clinic. He had come to us seeking treatment for his legs that were causing him immense pain to the point that he was unable to walk on them. We had treated him for an infection, given some pain meds, cleansed and dressed his ulcer. He had come back to get the wound rechecked and cleaned. It was healing nicely, seen by the pink skin and lack of drainage and smell. I gave it a thorough cleaning and bandaged him up, giving him extra supplies and explaining what he could do at home to continue with the healing process. What I didn’t understand is why he kept sticking around. What I found out from our Kenyan nurse, Victor, was that the man was hoping to give a testimonial because we had fixed him when no one else could, and gave him the ability to walk independently without pain.
It is small moments like this that truly make it feel like what we are doing makes a difference, and has an impact on people’s lives. I know personally, this experience so far has made me count my blessings and be so thankful that I was lucky enough to be born in Canada, where healthcare and education are free. Where most of us aren’t struggling with where our next meal is coming from, or how we are going to afford a hospital bill for something we could not control.
After clinic we convinced our fearless leader to let us hit up the Crying Stone, one of the local legends of Kakamega. The short story is that a daughter is disobedient and cruel to her mother and obsessed with her looks, and one day, after calling her mother a peasant and refusing to walk with her, the mother asks the Gods for vengeance. Her daughter is turned into a rock, and she has tears of remorse streaming down her face which can still be seen when it rains. All in all, it was a big rock. However, we are a pretty good looking bunch of people.