Another day has passed and although we did approximately 1000000 things we accomplished very little... Lots of waiting. Lots of talking with a little translating. Lots of driving around. A few things were of note. They follow:
1) I saw a dead person today. He was a young man. He was being carried out of a hospital room. We were at the hospital in Toliara to check in on Edward, who is a staff member at Beza, and also a young man. Edward was fine two weeks ago, but quickly fell ill. He was transported from Beza to Betoiky on a motorcycle (wedged between two people) and then from Betoiky to Toliara on a taxi-brusse. Apparently on Sunday Edward was unable to walk or lift his head, but today he was able to lift his head, so that is a good sign. Edward's wife was there and so I did the only thing I could to help, which is leave a bit of money. Indeed, I hope it does help.
2) We visited an orphanage for physically/mentally challenged children. I have a doctor friend (you know, the real kind of doctor) who can get his hands on various meds and medical supplies, so I figured I'd check out the facility and see what they needed. Apparently today is a holiday for the children so they were off on a field trip. The lady we spoke with said that what they need most is wheel chairs, crutches, and medicines. It seems like they are doing some really good work, so I am going to check in with them again in October and see what I can drum up.
3) Last night there was music playing outside until 5am ish. I asked Jacky what was going on. He said "oh it is the circumcision time, so they make party." Makes perfect sense. Then tonight after dinner, we hear the music starting up and so I asked if it was circumcision time again. Jacky looked at me as if I were nuts and responded "NO. The circumcision music has many more drums." Note to self- circumcision music is drum-heavy and only total morons don't know that. Check.
Tomorrow we are FINALLY off to Beza! I hope to get there at a decent hour so that I can go for a forest walk and catch up with 300. I will be back in internet land on or around Oct 13th. In the mean time, I can receive short (160 character) email messages at email@example.com OR snail mail at the following address:
YOUSSOUF Jacky (for Marni LaFleur)
BP 407 Tulear (601).
Leaving is always sad for me, even though I really want to get out into the field... I do look forward to the fresh air and animals and adventures ahead.