March 25

Friday, Holy Friday and full moon which is a Sri Lankan holiday

The medical team had a doc with today, so we could get some work done. We met the doc at Negombo hospital and then went to a Red Cross refuge camp that we had been to previously. It was a good set up and we saw lots of patients. I did wound care and blood pressures, I sing while I work. It brings happiness to me and others around me. (sometimes they may be laughing at me, but hey at least thy are laughing). A very thin woman with bad teeth (lots of bad teeth here) came for a dressing change. She has a cut on her little finger that is 1" long and very deep, through the skin. It had to be soaked to get the bandage off. It was infected and gross. I took her to see the doc, he says they frown on stitches here, just clean and redress it. I took many blood pressures. One man with an un repaired cleft palate had a bp of 190/130. He was referred to the hospital. I’m not not too too sure he will go.

I’m the happiest when I’m busy. This afternoon I have no work to do. I’m homesick, I miss Jeff, my family, my home and even George the cat. I was just about in tears, so I thought I would go for a walk that usually helps. I got a few hundred yards and came upon father Tessa and Heidi. Heidi is a woman who is giving 3-12 months of her life staying with the orphans. She is from Belgium. They invited me on their walk. We walked through the boys sleeping quarters. They have several rooms. Then the bathrooms which smelt so badly of urine. Hygiene is just not valued here.

After that we went to the real pigpen where they raise pigs. Many little piglets, very cute. Then to the batik ladies. I ordered a shirt for Jeff.

We had a discussion later in the evening. Trying to find someway we could pray together, people of different faiths. We ended with the Our Father. 6-7 of us. our group was made up of a Native American who still feels the pain of her ancestors murdered by Christians, an older devote Catholic who seemed shocked by the lack of belief, a student of Christianity, a Catholic that appeared to have had one too many beers, a Buddhist very knowledgeable on all faiths, a Lutheran open to learn, and someone openly critical of following the herd mentality. Father Tessa is difficult for many of us to understand. He speaks good English but is very soft spoken.
I had a difficult time going to sleep; I listen to music and read.