It’s just over 2 weeks since returning from my holiday at home. I did get my BLT sandwich as requested when I arrived at Heathrow – needless to say it was heavenly. Thank you Mark!! The 2 weeks at home flew by in a flurry of catching up with family and friends over lots of lunches and dinners. Absolutely lovely. The 4 kgs I lost came in handy as I didn’t feel guilty indulging in all those meals.
I came back with broccoli, mange tout beans, extra mature cheddar cheese and 2 packs of smoked streaky bacon stashed in my hand luggage! The broccoli and mange tout are long gone but everything else is being rationed. My flatmate Anna and I swoon over the delicious smells of frying bacon on a Sunday morning. A full English breakfast is a must to keep the spirits up!!! We do have poached eggs as our healthy option.
The 2 weeks home made me realise how much my family are missing me and what I am putting them through being away. The recent bombing incident on the outskirts of Abuja did give cause for concern at home too. It really brings home to me how it is not just me who has to accommodate to a change in routine. It seems weird not to been at home to watch the Great British Bake Off final or the start to this year’s Strictly Come Dancing. But I guess this is all part of the adventure of being on a 6-month PULSE assignment. I am just so grateful for applications like Facetime and Skype to keep in touch with loved ones.
I spent my birthday here in Abuja – the first time away from family. It was different and really made me appreciate my family so much. My flatmates certainly cheered me up when they presented me with a fabulous red velvet cake – thank you so much girls!!!
On the work side of things, I had my first positive result with the team I am working with in the National Association of Nigerian Nurses and Midwives (NANNM). They delivered on an activity in a very tight timeframe. And on top of that, came up with some clear improvements on how they would do things better for future projects. It was so rewarding to see and hear how they had implemented what I had introduced in my training last month.
I am looking forward to the next and final set of training with the same teams next month. This will be the acid test to see if what I introduced last month has indeed made enough sense for them to practise and implement as they manage their year 2 activities.
The weather has changed too since I have returned, much hotter – it hit 34C yesterday and it was a scorcher! We keep hearing about the ‘harmattan’ wind which is a dry and cold trade wind bringing dust from the Sahara. The humidity drops considerably during this time. It hasn’t hit Abuja yet but we wait in anticipation.
All for now,