Staying in Town
Today is expected to be a lighter day. We’re staying in Limon, and have already seen most of the people here. Some of the patients we will see today were unable to come to the clinic before, but some are follow-up visits.
I began the day with a 5:30 a.m. walk on the beach with Gabriel and Tim. It was so pleasant. They showed me the delta where the small river that runs through Limon meanders parallel to the ocean before spilling into it. And we saw a group of local fishermen casting a net in waist deep water. One proudly lifted the large sea bass they had taken earlier. We gave the thumbs up sign in approval, and they returned the gesture.
We also witnessed what must be a memorial service. Families gather on the shore and cast reeds into the ocean. We tried to be as unobtrusive as possible.
I also saw something that reminded me of the resourcefulness of people here. A man came to the clinic on a bicycle buggy. The tires, pedals and chain assembly were from a bicycle, but everything else he had carved out of wood. It was both practical and beautiful.
In the afternoon, we had planned a trip to the town. A heavy storm delayed the trip by an hour. As we waited, three of the staff workers at the clinic sang “How Great Thou Art,” which was apparently on of Dr. Gibson’s favorite hymns. They sang it in his memory, and one of the ladies, who had been with the clinic since its founding, began to cry.
The trip to the town involved a stop at the new orphanage. It was so much nicer than the facility they had previously, and yet still falls so short of standards in America. On the wall of the entry room was painted “La Casa Hogar Madre Leonarda.”
We also stopped by the local cemetery. As in many coastal cities, the graves were above ground. Some were tiled with what appeared to be standard kitchen or bathroom tiles.