Thursday, August 12, 2010

Mountains Beyond Mountains

Mountains Beyond Mountains, by Tracy Kidder, is the story of Dr. Paul Farmer, who dares to dream that tuberculosis can be cured in the poorest regions of Haiti, Peru and Moscow. The man is incredibly smart, having been educated at Harvard, but more important is his passion for the poor. He is daring and resilient, driven and compassionate. He makes the case for Margaret Mead's famous quote that a small group of people can change the world. I am inspired by Farmer, if not riveted to the descriptions of Haiti. The landscape, the poverty, the illness. The title of the book reflects a Haitian proverb that implies that beyond every mountain, or obstacle, is another mountain - or obstacle. The work is never done.
My bags are packed for Haiti with donated supplies and medicines. Here is what I am bringing:
Baby blankets (a duffle bag full)
Baby clothes
8 Head Lamps
8 Wrist Watches with second hands
8 Rain Ponchos (there are 8 students in the most recent graduating class of midwives)
100 doses of Pitocin
2 Bottles of Misoprostol
Bulb Syringes
A used Doppler that still works
2 Ham radios
Mosquito Netting
DEET insect repellant

What else? I will be travelling down with 2 large bags and will be donating almost everything except the clothes that I need to wear home and my camera equipment. Thanks to Isaac, I have a global data card for the computer, now just need to find a SIM card in Haiti and I will have lots of Internet access. So, if you hear from me, I found the SIM card. If I'm sporadic, I'll tell you all about it when I get home!

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