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We follow a young doctor’s footsteps while volunteering in the dermatology department of a Nepalese hospital.  We then share glimpses of Sri Lanka – a country that is calling out for help with physiotherapy.   Happy reading, keep warm and have fun!

Karin and Derek.


Olane – a young doctor’s volunteer experience in Nepal

dr_olaneMy name is Olane, a dermatology registrar in Spain. I came to Nepal to volunteer with doctors  of Plastic and Burns Unit from Bir Hospital. I perfectly remember my first days, when I found a barrier to speak and treat with patients due to different cultures. When I jumped this barrier, I started to enjoy and feel that I was really helping people. Their smiles were enough for me to understand that they really appreciated my work. Also working with the doctors was an incredible experience. I had the choice to see many injuries due to traffic accidents and burns patients. I worked with the doctors team to make the dressings and also helped them in the surgeries. It was incredible how they could manage all those lesions with such less resources. More than to help, sometimes I had the feeling that I came here to learn.  I felt really welcomed and confortable in the hospital. Now that my experience has finished, I see backwards and notice how many things I have learnt in this weeks, such as working in a group, communicating with people just looking at their faces, trying to work with limited resources… definitely an overwhelming experience.

The Top 10 Reasons Why We Love Sri Lanka

img_57941. Curry – Sri Lankan chicken curry with red rice is often served at breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Vegetable curries, cashew curry, dahl, coconut sambal, papadums, chili chutney, cinnamon, citrus and traditional accompaniments provide immense choice.  
2. Tropical fruits – an abundance of sour and green bananas, papaya, paw paw, watermelon, fresh coconut and juicy sweet pineapple.
3. The ice cream – vanilla, coconut and mango.  All creamy smooth, delicious and the perfect refreshment on a balmy afternoon.
4. Tea – it is not just a beverage – the local tea shops offer a brew for every mood and a img_5397flavour to suit everyone.  The wellness and medicinal properties of this herb are immense (apparently) and reportedly proven to combat diabetes and minimise the risk of developing certain diseases.  The local coffee is just as exceptional!
5. Transport is diverse and fun – take a tuk tuk to work and after hours travel off the beaten track in a jeep safari, a river boat safari or a  local train (choose between 1st or 2nd or 3rd class)!
6. People – smiling, friendly, helpful, gentle and curious.  The Ceylonese can name all the players in the Australian cricket team and everyone seems to have a cousin living in Melbourne!
7. Sunsets- each one a glorious display of pink skies and rays of light reflecting across the blue oceans and golden sandy beaches.  The traditional fisherman perch on stilts in the water while fishing at sunrise and sunset.
8. Street fashions –  elegant, colourful saris, accompanied img_5948_2by a matching parasol for sun protection, and thongs – the most popular local footwear.

9.  Architecture – colonial influences and an array of temples, forts built by the Portuguese and the Dutch, mosques, churches and stupas.

10. Natural beauty abounds with lush green jungles, colourful native flowers, bird life and wildlife (including elephants, troops of monkeys, proud peacocks and the elusive leopard!.

Mindful in May

The Mindful in May Meditation Challenge de1e2e88432657a4d50aeb13c2d1d237returns for its fourth year.  It is the world’s largest online global meditation campaign raising money for a global cause – clean water in developing countries.

Create a clear mind for you and clean water for others.  Register before 1 May: