Sunday, 26 July 2009


On Friday I finished at the clinic. It was sad saying bye to all the medics I've gotten close to over the last 7 weeks. Unless I return to the clinic one day, the chances of seeing any of them again is pretty minimal. Even within Thailand, almost all of them cannot leave Mae Sot as they live their illegally with no passport and no official papers. Most of the juniors plan to head back to their villages once they've finished their training and there they wont even have Internet to keep in touch. Only one has plans to come to the UK, working with child soldiers, so meeting up with him would be pretty sweet.

One of the first medics I met, Khin Thi

I finally met the famous Dr. Cynthia properly, who apparently has been nominated for a Nobel peace prize this year! Cynthia set up the Mae Tao clinic after fleeing Burma in the late 80's. In the last 20 years its gone from being just a small room to a fully fledged training hospital. You can read more about this here.

Dr Cynthia, me and Eh Thwa (the clinic coordinator)

For the last few weeks, I haven't felt the need to write this blog. Once I was settled in and used to the pace of the clinic, it no longer felt necessary. And rather than sit in an Internet cafe for an hour every few days, I felt more like hanging out with the other med students and teachers in Mae Sot, especially as some days I was working 8.30 to 18.30 (when I was teaching evening English classes).

My English class bought me a traditional Karen shirt which looks ridiculous on me. It has tassels and a V-neck on both the front and back...all the patients around the hospital just laughed at me the evening I wore it...

Two of the clinics resident dogs have a nap

I also spent a few hours in Burma which was pretty interesting. I went to renew my visa and met a little chap on the border who took me around Myawaddy in a tuk tuk, feeding me betle nut and showing me around temples with statues made of gold and precious jewels. In contrast the rest of the town was pretty poor. My guide insisted that Burma was a poor country rich in natural resources which apparently justified this...

A standard street in Myawaddy

So now I am in the north of Thailand, hanging out with a guy who was doing some teaching in Mae Sot. At the end of next week I'm planing to meet up with one of the other med students and head into Laos for a few days before hoping on the plane in Bangkok and returning to sunny England. I'm very much looking forward to seeing everyone.

Thank you for reading my blog!