So a week on and it seems like an age. A lot has happened both in the work and in just being here. Sitting here in the cool of the morning outside our bungalow it would be easy to just think we were on holiday! The garden is lovely despite the grass being burnt pretty dry. There are numerous birds that I have been somewhat fruitlessly trying to identify - long beaked sunbirds - little bright blue insect eaters and so many more. I just saw what was either a stork or a crane fly over and on our way to UTH ( university Teaching Hospital) on Wednesday the sky was quite full of large kites presumably finishing the nightly clearup. To add to the unfamiliar bird song we have neighbouring geese and peacocks over the wall!
We have spent a lot of time working on teaching materials, adapting our content to the new groups of trainees. We did our first day for the group at UTH on Wednesday. 20 mixed highly qualified professionals who are practising as psychologists, teachers and nurses and half are in the second year of their neuro-psychology Masters.. The course is a big commitment for them in their already busy schedule but there was a general enthusiasm to start using the practice gradually with their patients/clients. This week they will start bringing this work back for discussion and supervision in the group which is big part of how the skills are transferred.
We start our programme in Chainama tomorrow. Chainama is the main Psychiatric Hospital for the country and we worked there last year. This year we have very different trainees. 10 professionals working on the wards, nurses, social workers and Clinical officers and 10 nursing assistants and OT staff. In addition we are doing a shorter programme for trainee Clinical officers. The practical work in Chainama is in groups held in the big Occupational Therapy building where we worked last year.
So this week will see us trying out a full programme and adapting as usual as we go along! Power is a real issue, the regular power cuts seem to becoming increasingly random. Getting material printed and photocopied takes time - the local Post Net's printer and copier has not been working for over a week so this means another taxi ride to another shopping centre. Also we try to avoid using these for printing as Lesley already has had one stick corrupted and last year the same happened twice to me.
Beside all the working we have taken advantage of a Zambian / German/French musical week. Some of the visiting musicians have been staying here. Last Sunday was an amazing concert in the university chapel of sacred music from European and African traditions. Wonderful even though we got stranded after in the dark waiting for a driver as we rang the wrong number and ended up dragging someone away from his Church work party ! He forgave us! On Friday was a performance of the Magic Flute as you have never seen it. The snake was wonderful red and dragon like! Some glorious singing, quite an evening.