SOLOMON ISLANDS 2008
As many of you are aware Medisonship 1 has had an exciting voyage to the Solomon Islands and that story will have to be written in a book one day. Or perhaps a horror movie??
I thought it was an appropriate time for an update just to keep you informed of everything that is happening.
NOW THE GOOD NEWS!!!! Medisonship 1 now goes around in circles, what's new you say??, it goes in both directions. The steering mechanism that caused so much trouble on the trip is ALL FIXED and Max has been doing laps of Meresu Cove.
Our first crate arrives in Gizo tomorrow with replacement windscreen glass, new carpets for downstairs, life jackets, flares and safety equipment and all the essentials to get it started.
The nurses are out in a canoe this week visiting villages to get an idea of medical requirements. They return on Tuesday and so Medisonship 1 should start work around the end of next week. Can't wait to see the pictures and hear the first reports which will confirm that all the trouble was worthwhile.
We received a cheque from Pr Leigh Rice for the sum of $1,300.00 today. This was the proceeds from the Connections Cafe. We are very grateful for this donation of course, as our finances at the moment are fairly stretched. We have been able to pay off some of our crew and flight expenses such as John and Leighton' and Terry's fares but we still have quite a few to go and really need about another $20,000.00 to complete our repayments.
Peter Gately our Captain is back to work and his leg is slowly getting stronger each day. The good news for him is that Risk Management Inusrance at the Division looks like they will now be able to cover his expenses which is really great news.
Stef Wagner (USA) and her friend Dez (Melbourne) our 2 nurses in the Solomons have gone by Canoe all around Vella la Vella Island doing a survey of the medical needs with the ADRA representative. It will be quite an experience for them because each night they will stay in a different village and I am sure will be treated to "light refreshments" of the natural kind each day. I hope they can enjoy the 'mussi mussi' and the 'cow cow' and the 'pit pit' and the 'fish fish'????? Good way to go on a diet hey?? Maybe they'll both come back loving it and speaking in pijin.
Anyway when they return on Tuesday to Meresu Cove they should be making final preparations to take Medisonship 1 on its maiden voyage.
Ruth-Ellen, Helen and I will be going to the Solomons on the 4th Decemebr and returning on the 1st January, during that time Ruth-Ellen (returns 23rd December) hopes to spend some time working on Medisonship 1 as she will have finished her final exams and can be called Dr Marks!! Well fancy Ruth-Ellen being a Doctor. Congratulations girl, fantastic!!!!!
I hope she does bulk billing so we can all be her patients!!
And of course we cannot close without a very special THANK YOU TO GOD who has led us so dramatically in the establishment of our medical work in the Solomons! We give Him all the praise and honour and look back 30 years to the time when He planned Medisonship 1's creation. In just a few days this plan will be completed when the first patients climb those 'SILVER' stairs and receive the medical care they need from our dedicated nurses.
How great is that??