We made visits to the Agadez maternity—where by chance a baby was born while we were standing there, the Agadez hospital and the American military base (who asked us not to post our photos). They live isolated in air conditioned tents surrounded by concrete barriers, razor wire and a huge ditch. They are frustrated because four highly trained doctors are there with all the operating equipment and they are not allowed to leave the base. The only 6 of the 800 troops are allowed to leave. They are the civil affairs team who came to my house for dinner, but they are frustrated because they are supposed to win hearts and minds without a budget. Very sad. I am trying to work out their helping us with shipping since they have planes coming in everyday. The maternity hospital often runs out of electricity as this is a common occurance in Agadez and midwives are delivering babies while holding a flashlight—I’d like to give them a bunch of our gooseneck solar lights that our matrones loop around their necks to illuminate without having to hold it in their hand.
We also visited the best Ophthalmologist in Niger who is now based in Agadez and has a set up to do mobile missions to operate for cataracts. We hope to schedule a mission to co-incide with our next training mission in October 2018.
With visits done I said goodbye to Becky and Pat after brainstorming our next mission.
And then it was time to say goodbye to the beautiful birds who nest in the vines over my terrace and come to drink from the neolithic bowl I found in the desert.