Looking back at 2015

I’ve started to write this on December 30th, sitting on a train in Lincolnshire at 7:30am, on my way to work. It’s still completely dark outside, and half the country is still on holiday. I feel slightly jarred, like the alarm clock went off, but no one else has had to get up.

Feeling disjointed is somewhat appropriate – it aids my reflections on the last 12 months.

Avocado Cookies

So, Avocados are a thing you can get much more cheaply in Africa that you can in Lincolnshire. They also taste much better too. If you’ve never seen one, I’ve included a picture on the right.

They are also much healthier for you than butter, apparently full of “good fat”. Always up for a challenge, I decided to try and make some cookies, using avo instead of butter.

Snakebites and sad goodbyes

A final morning chapel followed our joyful late night escapades last night, with a combination of Amazing Grace and We Are Marching to get a bit of the African clapping vibe working.

Clare Fuller showed us lots of very interesting graphs. Dermatology complaints are known to under present, be poorly treated and lead to people avoiding healthcare for other important issues.

Ladies, feet washing and goodbye curry

Mary Hopper delivered a talk that usually marks part of a 30 hour course over 6 weeks. In 55 minutes.

Your race is a constant.
Your culture constantly changes.

She recommended reading a book called “Desert Flower”, by Waris Dirie.

She mentioned that simple things like Dermatology books rarely have pigmented skin, making medicine itself culturally inaccessible, but then Marli emailed me an African Skin Guide, which is not added to my ridiculous pile of things I need to read…

The Ladies are Dying

Afghanistan has a Maternal Mortality Rate of 6,500 per 100,000. Which is the highest ever recorded, anywhere in the world.

Reducing those MMR stats is simple: we know the answers: Improve access, Ensure skilled staff at deliveries, Increase Utilization &
Education and Family Planning. But the question is how to implement that…