Topics of the day: Mahé, health care, TNTV, farewell-dinner
Today I got some pictures developed and met Mahé who is working on a research project about economics and lagoon preservation in Mo’orea for an NGO that seems to have slightly similar goals to the Equilibrism e.V. (at least in terms of looking at problems – and solutions from a more holistic point of view) since we didn’t have time to meet him when we went over to Mo’orea last Thursday.
He had an infection in one of his eyes (possibly pink-eye – what Raphael had in Ra’iatea) so I accompanied him to the emergency ward of the hospital which was actually quite full but since he was coming from Mo’orea (and the last ferry leaves quite early – he’d called earlier and the staff said he would definitely be treated) they were able to speed up the process. He has to take antibiotics – not great but probably inevitable this time… The healthcare system here seems to be quite good – Mahé said it was a lot better than in France (I have no experience so I couldn’t say) – but I heard that, just like in so many other areas, they’re overspending. I think it’s important for patients at least knowing what their treatment costs (in order to appreciate it a bit more) and being encouraged to keep fit and healthy (exercise and eat properly) which is also proposed in Equilibrism. I don’t think this is currently part of the system… at least I saw some posters raising awareness about how much fat (quite graphically displayed in the form of table-spoons) is in certain foods. But then again, awareness-raising just seems to be the first step. What makes people change once they know that their behaviour is actually unhealthy/unsustainable? I guess I should take up some psychology lectures…
Since we still had a bit of time before Mahé’s next appointment we went for lunch and walked through that nice garden behind the le Haut-commissariat (next to the Assemblée) and dipped our feet into the bain de la reine to cool off a bit and watch the fish nibbling at our toes. Mahé had an appointment with someone from TNTV (in the environmental section – which amazingly exists) which came in handy since I wanted to pick up the copies of the recordings from our bicycle action, Raphael’s interview and that breakfast show we were invited to last week. Unfortunately there are copy right issues so ended up leaving empty handed but the little flower I found on my bicycle immediately made up for the disappointment (I guess it’s those little things in life that make me happy 🙂
Then I cycled down to the market to buy large quantities of vegetables – now that I’m leaving they’ve learnt that I never take a plastic bag… Roti and I cooked dinner while Raphael finished packing up his things. Hinano, Johann and Rudolf came over to eat with us and we talked about – the Tahiti project – of course and about what is happening at the Atitia Centre (which is part of the Gump Research Station (UC Berkeley)) in Mo’orea. There is definitely synergy to be made use of. The four will probably go on a weekend trip to have a look at the centre.
After doing the final accounting/sorting through receipts (Raphael and I had a common budget item (?) – I hate dealing with money) and some other annoying “business” on my laptop I went to bed really late.
Final thoughts of the day: Mahé and I had so much to talk about – it’s unlikely that we’ll ever get a chance to continue with our conversation… maybe the world isn’t so small after all.
We invited Eliane over for dinner but she seems to have Dengue so she couldn’t make it – hope she feels better soon…
I wonder if and if so, how the project in Mo’orea will tie in with the Tahiti Projekt… if the people we have met and become friends with (and brought together/introduced to each other) will keep in touch and continue to be so motivated when we’re gone…