Day 3 – Sugar and Spice and all things nice

Thursdays turned out to be a half day and Fridays are the weekend as Bangladesh seems o bwork a 5.5 day week. This was totally unexpected and I found myself at a bit of a loss as to what to do because normally I plan my time and what I need to do or want to do but now I had to forcefully remind myself that I was here for 11weeks and could chill. I wanted to go out a bit so I went and sat by the hydropool which I expect or rather, hoped, it was not really used for rehabilitation because it was a bit black for my ease. I’d been fully prepared for our first day at work but I settled for a bit of writing.

This was what I thought would happen but in reality, I could barely write 5 words before someone came and spoke to me or wanted to take a selfie. This is all well and good and understandable but it got to about 12 people all standing around getting me to repeat words after them in Bengali and I was surrounded by phone cameras and not understanding them that I just had to stand up and go. I didn’t mind to start with but that just became a bit much, I can see why celebs are barely ever seen out and about and if they are, they’re wearing sunglasses and a hood. I look so pasty white compared to the rest of this current world that it’s no wonder they think I look tired or otherworldly. But that’s just me.

The morning had involved some physio at least, what I could talk my way into or understand anyway. I met my educator, Chandenee, which was a relief because I was beginning to worry about how I was going to fill in my booklet we have to complete for placement and then I can start worrying about how the hell I was going to complete my objectives. If I was here to study a language then I was doing okay, is it possible to change my degree for my time here, please?

We started on a ward round which basically extended over the entire hospital but part way through an ambulance turned up outside.

‘Come, I want to see the body.’ Chandenee said.

‘Okay.’ I replied though in my head was saying, Wait, did she say body? We followed this trolley that clearly had a body on it, live or dead, but was covered up. We walked to the front of the crowd and they removed the scarf from the head and it was indeed, a dead body. Suddenly feeling very intrusive and rude, we walked away and Chandenee told me he was a colleague who had unexpectedly died yesterday. I felt awful and all I could mutter was ‘I’m so sorry.’

I then thought I could take some stamps that Chandenee showed me from this table where they were making bags out of scrap paper but she turned around saying ‘No, no, it is counted, you cannot take.’ Whoops.

We grabbed some breaktime food again like yesterday and though I was this time prepared, Chandenee bought it for me anyway. I then went and mooched around the rehab room, eventually zoning in on a female PT working alone with a patient. Of course, 20 minutes later, we had a crowd. One man who I remembered being very competitive during sports yesterday wanted to teach me Bangla if I taught him English because he wanted to pass his English exam and go to England. So everyone was laughing and joking whilst I tried to speak Bangla and it almost seemed like the patient was forgotten about. I tried to revert conversation back to PT related stuff but it would just sling shot back to language.

We then went to a department meeting where I’m sure they didn’t really talk about work or patients judging by the laughing and I tried a ‘sweetmeet’ which was effectively a ball of dough soaked in sugar syrup. Everything is so god damn sweet here. It’s a case of do you want some tea with that sugar? How do these people still have teeth? Why is everyone not diabetic?

Then we finished at 1pm and you know the rest. I got invited out to what basically sounded like a date at 7:30pm and I’m making sure Aaliyah comes with me to what I could gather could possibly be a bit of a music jam. Watch this space I guess?

We also wore our tailor made salwar kameez today and I think we pulled it off.

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