Picking in Provence

Picking grapes? Picking lavender? Picking olives? No! Picking whether or not to be here. Talk about a First World Problem! There are castles on hilltops at every turn and churchbells ring out on the half hour from medieval spires reaching into blue skies.  Ancient Roman cities recently discovered under layers of soil sit on display … More Picking in Provence

Dealing with DRTB

As my project with Medecins Sans Frontieres draws to a close, reflections about the year laid out behind me prevail.  I am only leaving Cambodia briefly but my departure and the end of my work commitment here have me feeling very philosophical about this beautiful and catastrophic nation and the incredible experiences I’ve had here. … More Dealing with DRTB

Unequal Exaggerations

This week I met a new patient who was unable to control quiet tears every time any of the staff walked into her isolation room.  That’s not especially surprising, being diagnosed with two stigmatising diseases (HIV and DRTB) in a country where the majority are already consumed by poverty-related stress.  I knew that as the … More Unequal Exaggerations

Sidecars and Pyjamas

The only sidecar I ever encountered until I came here was on our television screen in the 1970s.  George & Mildred was an English comedy series which I loved as a child.  The opening sequence featured Mildred in her old fashioned helmet looking decidedly unimpressed from the low-set sidecar attached to her husband George’s old … More Sidecars and Pyjamas