I find it necessary to comment on the wide variety of strange health problems I've seen since I've been here. Fortunately, the only major thing that's happened to me so far is my twisted ankle that stayed swollen for over two months. I find strange bruises all the time, from the way-too-small shower and the crazy bus rides where I think that I'm going to fly through the windshield if I don't hang on the whole time, but I can live with those. My roommate woke up one morning to find a weird lump that looked kind of like a gigantic splinter on the back of one of her fingers, that then disappeared (just guessing, since she hasn't mentioned it since). Another girl I was talking to last night got something called a "dog" parasite from sitting in a chair at the one beach I go to frequently. I'd already decided to never, ever get in the water at the beaches in Barranquilla again, but that makes me think twice about even using the chairs when I go to soak up the sun! One of my coworkers called me this morning to tell me about the "mold" he got from his towels not completely drying after using them. Someone else got stung by jellyfish at the beach (which they didn't know at that time) and the doctors first thought it was herpes. The same person had some other strange kind of dryness/rash/growth that they said was from soap. I just keep waiting to see what will come next!
All of this, plus the experiences I've had visiting the doctor and dentist here, make me seriously think about what would happen to me here if I really do get sick sick. Don't get me wrong, I know that there's good doctors here, but I've yet to meet any of them. Maybe it's because I've gone to the IPS (through the insurance I have here), and the quality isn't even close. Time to try private practitioners! The time it takes studying here to become a general practitioner is shorter than it is at home, and the doctors come out soooo much younger! That, on top of how much students cheat here (once again, certainly not everyone, but we've had some very interesting conversations on this in my classes!), make me question what the doctors tell me here. Well, I'll continue this rant later...time to go home and cook my Thanksgiving food!