Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Getting There

The team at the Miami airport
So many things have happened in the last 24 hours, one of those things is NOT sleep. We arrived at Jorge Ch├ívez International Airport after 10:00 PM Monday the 9th. With 26 souls and 36 boxes to go through customs it was going to be a very long night. We all made it through immigration without a hitch. Then we went to pick up our 1 each suitcase and the 36 boxes of supplies. I could give you all of the dirty little details of customs checking all of our boxes, but I am exhausted and it would take to long. I will say that they opened 10 of our 36 boxes, and really did a thorough check of what was in them and we thought that we were on our way....but then the man with the clipboard, collared shirt and tie came by and decided he needed to check some boxes too. I became slightly irritated at this point and was ready to go "sistah" on him, but since I don't speak Spanish goin' "sistah" on him would have only served to have made our night even longer. He probably would have said, let's put the crazy Black American woman in jail or something. So, I bit my tongue and waited while he did his cursory check of a few more boxes. We were met outside of the airport by our Rotarian counterparts from Peru, 2 buses and a truck for the boxes. As the "quartermaster" for this mission it is my responsibility to keep track of those boxes and their contents....oh did I tell you that at customs I had to sign my name on about 5 million documents AND they took my fingerprint! OK maybe I didn't sign my name that many times, but they did take my fingerprint. CREEPY. While the rest of the team climbed on the buses to head to the hotel I road with one of our Peruvian Rotarians to the hospital to off load and once again count the boxes.....36 boxes once again accounted for. This was my introduction to the hospital Hospital Nacional "Arzobispo Loayza" - 2AM, walking into a single story building that looked to be at least 50 years old, a ward of patients, men, women and children in beds lined against the walls suffering from various maladies, it was completely surreal.  I finally made it back to the hotel at around 3:30AM. Must count the boxes, must count the boxes... My wonderful roommate had my first ice cold Peruivan beer waiting for me
and a bottle of water. Then it was off to bed, for about 4 hours of sleep.

No comments: