I can tell that the Haitian pediatrician I’ve been working with this week is sizing me up.  She’s not too impressed yet with my limited knowledge of things like malaria treatment, but she’s been mostly encouraging so far.

So I had to laugh when we had the following conversation today after rounds.

Her: So, are you ready for Saint Marc?
Me: I hope so!
Her (looking skeptical): So do I!

I’d mistaken her inquiry as interest in my personal feeling of preparedness, but I think she was expressing concern for the children of Saint Marc who are going to be in the care of this blan* who doesn’t know how to write orders (in French), struggles to remember “basic” Creole words, and generally doesn’t seem to be quite on her game yet.

I know that it’ll be a rough start, but I’m learning more every day.  I’ll work with a Haitian pediatrician in Cange, and the two pediatricians here have assured me I can use them as resources as well.  Plus there’s C, my “other half” – the guy I split my jobs with.  He moved back to Boston when I moved to Haiti.  He’s just finished 6 months of doing what I am about to do, so I am sure he will be happy to offer a hand as well.  Maybe it’s just the effect of a productive but enjoyable weekend, but I’m feeling optimistic that I’ll get the hang of this.

*”Blan” is a Creole word which literally means “white.”  It’s used, though, more generally as a word to describe foreigners.  My colleagues and I are all blan.

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