Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Life in Buenos Aires

All sorts of things happen here in Buenos Aires, with the kind of work that we are doing. Since I last wrote... I'm going to try to summarize.
One day I was hanging out at the church, when we got word that our friend had just successfully had her baby, a C-section, in the public hospital. It is great that health care here can be offered free to everyone, its phenomenal actually. But the reality of that system is that they get the bare minimum of care. Our friend needed someone to come in and function as a nurse essentially. It was the only way that she could have her new born baby in the room with her. I volunteered, and was able to spend 8 hours with her in the hospital, doing my best to learn about new born babies and the Argentine hospital system. Some super funny moments came about. I am trying to do this all on my own, by the way, as they don't let men on the floor outside of the two visiting hours a day. So when I go to ask for authorization to be on the floor, I get yelled at for barging in on a doctors meeting without knocking. Later our friend sent me to Neonatal to ask for her baby. I thought to myself, really? If I just show them this little authorization paper, are they just going to hand over a newborn baby to some crazy north american? sure enough, the nurse looked at me like I was crazy- you can't just take the baby! We'll send him when he's ready.
It was worth the wait, the baby was so beautiful. We sat together and I got to hear more of my friend's story. I have so much to learn from her. She loves her three children so selflessly and works so hard to provide for them. This was my adventure to the Argentine hospital.
A couple of days later we were back at the hospital visiting our friend. Afterwards we had decided to show up at Jen and Jer's with a Sabbath Surprise, kilo of ice cream. The visit was short and we were on our way to the bus stop, the same route we had taken a hundred times. Walking down the street, all of a sudden when I looked back and saw that some guy was roughly trying to take Tina's guitar. Before I knew it someone was grabbing at my backpack. I took off running, but when I saw the knife in there hand and there pull was strong on my bag, I let me arm out of the strap and said goodbye to my belongings. I rushed to alert Jer of what had happened, screaming and pounding on there door. We all ran in the house, flustered and upset, yet so glad that nobody had been hurt at all. Jer would run down one of the thiefs and steal back Ambers bag. A guy from the neighborhood that knew the kids went and asked them for my bag! They gave it back. Although they had taken out my only pair of tennis shoes I own, my water bottle, my sweatshirt and some cash, I was so thankful to get my journal back. Everything else can be replaced.
This is the reality of the places where we work and spend our time. It was a good reminder to never let our guard down, and to not carry so many things with us. Just so everyone knows, we are fine and we are very safe. We will be very cautious.

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