Saturday, October 11, 2014

Starkey Mission to China, 2014 - Day 5

Kunming, China
Patients fitted: 603

Today was our last day of fittings in Kunming.

The day went smoothly and I felt good, unlike others in our group. Kevin is back after being sidelined with a respiratory infection for a couple of days and now Todd is feeling terrible with a fever and general malaise.

We had a few rough cases today of people with no hearing at all in one ear. Despite our best efforts, it was not possible to do anything for them. We had a break around noon as we ran out of patients, but around 1:00 pm they started flooding in.

After a steady afternoon things seem to peter out around 3:30 and most of the people left early to go
shopping or see the sights of Kunming. I decided I would rather stay behind and help fit the last few stragglers. As it turned out, there was a steady stream of patients until about 5 pm, making for a long day. I stayed until the bitter end with Jessie helping me by translating and Bill ever present helping with the problem cases (and there were quite a few of those).

It felt really good when the last patient was fitted, and I said my farewells to Jessie as I did not think I would see her again, and headed to my room for a shower. It turns out Jessie's family owns a photo shop and she gave me some glossy prints of her, David and I that she had taken over the past few days. It was a wonderful gesture and I am very happy to have met such a wonderful person. We've exchanged email addresses so we can keep in touch in the future.

After having a shower and doing some laundry, I headed down to the bar for a beer before dinner, then headed over to The Market for the evening's group dinner sponsored by Starkey.

As it turns out, Jessie and another translator named Nature were both invited to dinner so I had one last visit with Jessie before finally saying farewell and heading off to bed.

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