ENJOYING HONDE VALLEY
On the 25th of August I went back to see the surgeon about my ulcers. After 9 weeks of treatment for ulcers I wasn't getting any better and was tired of being sick! He did a colonoscopy and another gastroscopy. More biopsies taken and no malignancies but this time it showed massive amounts of h. Pyloria, and infection in my stomach common in developing countries, and causes ulcers, so I was on the wrong treatment for 9 weeks.
I started on a 14 day treatment program of antibiotics on the 28th of August and it seems a bit better. Hopefully this will put an end to the ulcers and erosion in my stomach. I have good and bad days but am praying this will end it!
On the 2nd of September, Patience and Major and I took off for a short vacation to celebrate their 28th wedding anniversary.
We spent the night of the 2nd in Harare and were able to have dinner with Dr. Shield and Mrs. No Kajese and their daughters Zoey and Alexis. We had a great visit and kept our social distancing! We brought pizza home to eat at home. Dr. Kajese was our doctor from 2009-2013 at Chidamoyo. He was in Italy in 2019 doing a course in open-heart anesthesia and was sent home in March when COVID-19 became so bad in Italy. He leaves again on the 15th of September to go back and finish and will end in February 2022.
On Thursday the 3rd of September we drove 6 hours from Harare east to the Honde Valley area. We stayed on a tea estate. When we got within 2 kms of the plantation a truck transporting bananas had slide across the road and blocked us from going any further. Patience and I decided to walk in and leave Major with the car to come when truck was cleared! He showed up an hour later!
We spent the next 3 days enjoying hiking, some time fishing for Major and Patience ( I took a nap!), drives in the tea fields, seeing waterfalls, eating wonderful bananas grown there and drinking a lot of tea! Our rooms at the lodge looked out on a 9 hole golf course and tea fields all around. Enjoyed tea at 0600 every morning and seeing different birds and the quiet of the mountains.
This area is green all the time with almost daily rain and in the mountains with pine and cypress trees and bananas and tea up and down mountains. A big change from here and definitely you don't see the brown and dusty roads like here!
We drove to Harare on Sunday and home here on Monday night. It was a wonderful trip away and we did celebrate the Anniversary on the 5th of September. They prepared a nice cake for them as our dessert.
The Msasa trees are in full bloom now throughout the country and we enjoyed driving and seeing the bright red, orange and yellow colors of the leaves this time of the year. It was a beautiful drive.
On our way back in Harare we got to meet up with another of our old doctors, Calvin Moyo, from 2016-2019. He is doing a residency program in Kenya for radiology and has been home since March doing it on line. He heads back on 18 September to Nairobi for 3 more years.
Now back to work. COVID-19 continues and we continue to see plenty of patients as the other hospitals in Zimbabwe continue their 3 month strike--rumors are nurses gave up and went back to work today. People sitting at home and being paid! Even though some lockdown continues it is hard to know in the big cities and outside the hospital. Few proper mask wearing, no social distancing and water hard to even come by to drink in the cities, let alone frequent hand-washing. The police have many roadblocks to check for masks when they wear their masks below their nose or on their chin! They just wave cars through no matter what.
It was nice to be sleeping under down comforters in Honde and Harare and we are back at Chidamoyo with highs of high 80 and lows of 55. We are moving towards summer very quickly.