8:31 pm
The day is winding down.  Day Zero is behind us.  It’ll be nice to get to the official Day One of the clinic.  It was a pretty good Day Zero, by the way.  As Day Zero’s go.  They aren’t always the most thrilling of days – and the stress can be high, but we survived and are all still looking forward to Monday with enthusiasm.
We had our last “vacation” morning.  Breakfast at 7:30 and the bus left at 8:30.  We made it to Bombo well before church started (ok, 10 minutes…which is a lifetime).  Church was in the outdoor Cathedral.  I must say there is something special about worship under the skies of Uganda.  It was a great time together and Pastor Alex brought the message which support this year’s theme:  Servants On Call.  We are here to serve the community and that is going to mean some sacrifice.  He did a great job and with the final “Amen” – we were in full Medical Mission mode.

The clinic had anticipated and announced start time of 2 pm.  There was still a lot of setup to do.  I think the rain yesterday slowed down the local preparations, so things kicked into high gear after church.  There were still a good number of tents to put up and chairs to be delivered.

The doctors (most of whom did not show up for orientation on Saturday) had to have a second orientation meeting.  I’m not sure what time the meeting actually got started, but at 2:20 I poked my head into the sanctuary to remind Dr. James that there were patients waiting in the rooms for all the doctors to begin.  He said they had at least another 20 minutes of prep.  And then they had to pick up their doctor supplies – and then wander to the rooms to begin seeing patients.  Needless to say, there was a bit of a slow day in terms of patient flow.  But we saw all the church folks who waited in line, and since we know they are local, we know they can easily return in the morning for their prescriptions.  In light of that, we closed the pharmacy at 5.

We were all headed to the bus, but I was missing someone.  I figured out it was Stacey (our nurse practitioner).  She was working in pediatrics.  And it was after 5 pm and she still had a waiting room full of little children to see.  Yikes.  She said she’d asked for help, but none ever came.  I should have checked on her a lot earlier, but now it was getting late.  Everything was locked up.  So I went downstairs and there were 5-6 doctors just laughing together in Internal Medicine.  I drafted them – really, I forced them to come upstairs to Pediatrics and help see the last few patients.  Not sure they were all that happy.  But they were very young doctors and they could knock this out quickly.  I followed them upstairs to make sure they didn’t find a detour.

I went back to the bus and we left.  Rob followed probably half an hour later (but arrived 10 minutes after us on the bus).  We didn’t get back to our hotel until 6:15 or so.  Dinner was in 45 minutes. And we were all on time – but dinner didn’t make its way into the dining room for another half an hour.  That drags out the night.  It was good though – one of my favorites here at the Guest House – pizza and fried chicken (and rice, beans, slaw, and pasta).  It was good.

After dinner we went out to the patio area for devotions.  There is another group here and it was just too noisy to concentrate.  At least for me.

This is a great group.  They have energy and enthusiasm for the work.  They enjoy each other and what God is doing.  So it’s all great on Day Zero.

I did forget the most bizarre and wonderful news of the day.  First thing in the morning I got out my computer and the separate monitor and the new connecting cord Morris had purchased in Kampala.  I got it all hooked up and turned on the computer.  I was genuinely shocked to see the Apple logo appear on my laptop screen.  What?  Is it working?  Uhhh….really????  It’s true.  The screen on the laptop was working again.  And it worked all day. And I’m using it now.  Praise the Lord!!!  Electronics with a mind of their own?  I don’t know – but I am thrilled it is working again, though I really don’t trust it.  We shall see.

But it was a good (long) day.  We are ready for Day One in the morning.  Here’s hoping for a good night of sleep – and my long-anticipated shower in a few minutes.  Crawling onto my foam mattress clean and exhausted is the best moment of the day.  I put on my headphones and spend some time thinking about the Lord.  Praying.  Enjoying the moment….and the fan.  It is time to rest.

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