Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Starkey Mission to China, 2014 - Day 9

Dali, China
Patients fitted: 601

I had a really good night's sleep last night and woke up ready to start our first day of fittings in Dali. Breakfast was disappointing as it was mostly traditional Chinese food and I have had enough of that (and fried chicken sandwiches) for the time being. I just wanted a good strong coffee, some waffles, bacon, and maple syrup. Oh well. Maybe in Lijiang?

Right off the bat I got lost trying to walk to the stadium where the fittings were taking place. The interpreter at the hotel pointed me down the wrong road (or I misunderstood her) and I ended up walking for 20 minutes in the wrong direction until I saw some government building and guards with machine guns. At that point I turned around, walked back to the hotel, and saw the stadium about 2 minutes walk from the hotel in the other direction. Sigh. At least I got some exercise.

Fittings today were a mix of frustrating and normal. A couple of patients were unresponsive and had a different dialect of speech which confused our interpreter, Helen. I was working with Rosaline today and she managed to realize when someone was not understanding and helped to communicate. I think we did rather well, and we ripped through all of the patients by about 2:00 pm. Lunch was fried chicken sandwiches (again) so I am really looking forward to something different for dinner. We've had KFC so often that I am beginning to think I'd prefer Chinese food (although not the pig brains).

We're going to go out for a walk and explore a bit and try to do some more shopping.  There is a huge Walmart here so I hope I get lucky and they have some cheap costumes. Maybe I'll luck out and find an Assassin's Creed costume for Drew.

Update: Rosaline and I ended up going for a 2 hour walk around the town looking for shopping and just generally seeing the sights. David joined us as we were walking along the river and we all walked up onto the main bridge where we had an awesome view of the lake and surrounding area.

David ended up heading back for dinner while Rosaline and I walked...and walked...and walked. Eventually we decided to find a place to eat on the way back to the hotel. Most places were closed still (they don't seem to open for dinner here until really late - like 6 or 7 pm!) but we managed to find a Korean BBQ place and man was it good! Some real meat was a welcome diversion from traditional Chinese food and KFC. 

Both Rosaline and I were absolutely stuffed, and I went back to my hotel room early, had a shower and watched two movies and went to sleep.

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