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Winter in Bangladesh

Written by Antje on February 8th 2021 21:26

In the winter we have our dry season, during this time there is lots of dust and you can hardly find anything green. But things have begun to change this past week. In our area people have begun to irrigate and rice is being planted everywhere. I always enjoy seeing green again!

Rice fields

The water pump house with a plastic hose to transport the water to the right field:

Water pump house

 It has been cold the last few weeks in Bangladesh. Of course everything is relative, but minimum temperatures are around 12 degrees and during the day about 18 degrees. If there is mist the whole day then it feels really cold. We do not have heating in our houses, but fortunately we have enough warm clothes! This picture made me smile! All the goats have a T-shirt of sweater on to keep them warm in the cold weather!

Cloathed goats

 

Here are a few pictures of our Christmas celebration. Corona regulations in Europe are rather strict, so we feel blessed with our mild regulations. Other than wearing face masks in the hospital, we are not very concerned about Corona. Here in the country we see very few serious cases of Corona. The majority of people can live freely and normally.  

Blowing up and hanging balloons used for Christmas decorations in the hospital:Blowing up balloons

Hanging balloons

 Every Christmas there is a celebration for the staff and patients where the Christmas story is told. I also am allowed to speak here. 

Christmas story

 Speech Antje

The church’s Christmas celebration was held outside so more social distancing could be possible. We also wore face masks.

 Christmas celebration

As foreigners we were allowed to sing a song in English:

Singing

After the church service we did not have a meal together (normally we do). Many people were not happy with this. But after the New Year’s Day service we made up for this! Kichuri, a meal with rice, lentils and spices, was easy to share.

 Food queue

Food sharing 

My housemate Kris and I went to visit our cook. Over the years she and her husband have been slowly building a brick house. Recently the house was painted which made it look very attractive. It was fine to hear that one of their daughters paid for the windows and that the paint was paid with money from selling a cow. In the picture Kris and I both have a Sari on because is it a celebration. 

Cook

 

With regards to my work: It remains difficult for me to find a good balance between working as a surgeon and as Medical Director. Surgery is clearly my first love. Regularly I see patients with problems that in The Netherlands would have been earlier diagnosed and treated. 

The most recent example is a girl with a congenital defect in her anus. In The Netherlands this abnormality would have been treated in her first year of life. When she was 7 years of age she had her first operation and unfortunately had no further checkups afterwards. Constipation is often a problem with this abnormality. Now, 10 years later, she comes with a belly that is literally full with poop (she looks like she is pregnant). I hope that after operating on her, her constipation problem will be better under control.