Saturday, August 15, 2009

Asian Food Store!

One week down, five to go. Things have been going pretty well here in Ayr. I feel like I've finally settled into a bit of a rhythm and I'm excited to see what will happen next. It doesn't feel like a "home" though...I carry my towel, soap and shampoo to the showers every morning; I have to close my door and take keys whenever I need to pee; I have to wear shoes whenever I leave my room; and my butt is killing me cuz all they've got here are these plastic chairs. But, all in all I can't complain because I have running water, electricity and a bed to sleep in at night. It could definitely be a lot worse.

I snapped a few quick photos of the hospital. It's much bigger than what I expected, which was essentially a beefed up general practice. It has 30 beds in a general ward with 24 hr nursing staff, an emergency ward with four beds, four outpatient consultation rooms, a couple minor procedure rooms, and some other consultation rooms used for visiting specialist clinics (eg. pediatricians, psychiatrists). There's a devoted mental health ward located just below our nursing staff quarters where they run clinics Mon-Fri from 8-5pm.

Also, to my surprise, they have a surgical ward with two operating theatres and everything to support them. On Tuesday we were able to observe and assist in a few procedures including a few excisional biopsies, a breast biopsy, surgical decompression for carpel tunnel and a vasectomy. One of the doctors here has diplomas in Obs/Gyne and Anesthesiology and that allows them to perform procedures requiring general anesthetics. They often have visiting surgeons come in to do scopes and other procedures the other days of the week. So far, I'm liking the feel of rural medicine. It's a mixed bag of medicine, surgery and general practice topped with a bit of trauma and emergency medicine. Our preceptor is a certified ultrasonographer so does heaps of stuff by himself. He'll perform all of the antenatal scans himself, do echocardiograms, and will even take people from emergency presenting with abdominal pain for scans to rule out anything sinister. I'm really quite impressed with how versatile they are.

We just went to grab a few groceries from Coles before it closed (not much is open on Sundays here) and we spotted this tiny Asian food store. We had asked a bunch of asians we bumped into at Coles if there was an asian food store in town and they said we'd have to go to Townsville. So when we saw this place, I was thinking "they lied to us!" We went in and found out that it had just opened up 3 days ago. In fact, it was so new that they didn't even have everything priced. It was great though, we picked up some curry paste and chili paste to spice up our food and grabbed a box of instant noodles. Finding the only asian food store in town was the highlight of my day lol.

We usually use this korean brand chili paste in a red tub but this will have to do for the next 5 weeks. =)

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