Monday, November 15, 2010

An Update from Pignon

Several people have asked for an update and that we keep up with the blog more, so I will summarize recent events and then try to update more frequently with less information.

Just when things seemed to be heading toward “normal,” the first signs of a Cholera outbreak appeared. Of course there is a lot of speculation as to where it came from, but the Nepalese UN seems to be under fire the most being that the strain is similar to that found in Nepal. There have also been comments in various news articles condemning the government saying they should have expected this. Quite frankly that seems a little harsh considering there hasn’t been Cholera here for decades.

With that being said, we honestly didn’t worry too much about it because it appeared to be contained to the southern part of the country. Then tropical storm Tomas came along and with it came lots of rain. Since then the Cholera epidemic has reached 6 of the 10 provinces, including here in Pignon. It is a really helpless feeling knowing you can do nothing to prevent its spread amongst the general population. There have been several announcements on the radio educating people on the importance of boiling water and frequently washing hands, but there is little that can be done regarding proper sanitation. Most people, with the exception of spoiled people like us, do not have indoor plumbing or a clean water supply. To be blunt they have outdoor latrines and often bathe in the river. People here are very nervous as the numbers admitted to the hospital continue to rise.

As for us personally, we are doing just fine and are taking precautions, most of which were in place before this scare. We have well water that is filtered for cooking, drinking and brushing teeth. We also have always washed our produce in bleach water, and we don’t eat or drink anything from street vendors. Our concern is for the community and this country that just doesn’t seem to be able to catch a break.

Ok, enough with the bad news…on to the good. The kids are really enjoying having Jordyn here as their teacher/big sister/babysitter/entertainer. I am sure they are learning so much more this year. They also have classmates, so that helps. She also gets lots of great care packages from her family and she shares!! It would be pretty hard to hide all the goodies, but I don’t think she would do that anyway.

Jackindy is keeping us on our toes, me especially since we’re together most of the day. His new favorite thing to do is throw toilet paper rolls into the toilet, yesterday it was three! He is also becoming quite a climber and can frequently be found standing on the table, on top of the back of the couch looking out the window, climbing the ladder on the bunk bed or--my favorite-- inside the washing machine after falling in from the couch. And yes, our washing machine is in the living room. My dad doesn’t know it yet, but building a little house on the patio for it is going to be one of his projects in January.

Speaking of projects, the few groups we’ve had in the past month have done great work. Because of their effort and willingness to do what needs to be done, we now have wiring in the outpatient clinic, have made progress on the hospital staff quarters and now have the library landscaping done. There is never a lack of things to do, and we are grateful to have their help!

We thank you all for continued prayers and support.