CBM TRIP - August 19-26, 2021 - by Marlo Moseley
It’s Great to be back! This is the second trip for the boat since the COVID pandemic began. We had an American crew of 6 people from Florida, Ohio, Wisconsin and Indiana. Delta was the Airline we used since American is not doing the flight into Manaus until November of 2021. The flight went through San Paulo and then to Manaus. When we arrived the boat was parked at the floating dock down from the market. It had been painted and various improvements had been made. All of our bags were loaded and off we went. There was no time to lose, this is a short trip made even shorter by having to be back in Manaus to get our COVID tests before our flight home. After having a meal and getting cleaned up we began to sort medicine. Everyone had brought extra bags to try and help the boat get restocked. (Bring A Lot if you are coming, once you are here you will wish you had brought more).
We saw 327 patients in 4 days from 5 villages. Including Leandro Grande, Arara, Cabri, Abacate, and Santa Luzia. These villages are along the Jatapo and Uatuma. They were very glad to see the boat coming. It had been 2 years since the CBM Amazonia had been there.
It was definitely different from how trips in the past have been done. CBM worked hard to take every precaution to make sure that the crew, both Brazilian and American, and the people in the villages were safe. Everyone aboard wore masks and washed up regularly while patients were being seen. Only one representative from the family would come aboard and see the doctor and receive what they needed. The American crew stayed on the boat for the duration of the trip. A large percentage of the villagers had been either fully vaccinated or at least had one vaccine. This was done by the county medical boat. Unfortunately this was the extent of the care ,the county boat had no other medication on board.
There was an American crew member on the front of the boat to welcome and to give out sanitizer and help with sandals, a second was helping in with glasses. There were gift bags to be handed out and help was needed in the pharmacy and running back and forth from the bottom of the boat with things that the pharmacy needed. There of course were vitamins and other medication to be counted and bagged. If you look there is always something that needs to be done. If you think you don’t see anything look harder.
Being with the familiar faces of the Brazilian crew was Awesome!! They always welcome you with a brilliant smile! Worshiping our Lord and Savior and studying the Word with fellow believers is always one of my favorite things to do on the trip. From Portuguese lessons with Earl to lifting our voices to praise God on the top deck.
Once here you will wish you could stay and start planning your return trip. The send off from the crew is always wonderful. No one does a BBQ quite like it and you’ll never be able to go to another Brazilian steakhouse in the states, because it won’t measure up. We all have our negative COVID test and are clear to go home. It will be a long year……..until we return next July.
Being on the CBM Amazonas has quickly become something that is very dear to our family. While we might not have medical training or speak Portuguese, being able to support Earl, Ruth, the local Brazilian missionaries and crew has been one of the biggest blessings. Our family has begun to really dream alongside the Lord and look forward to what he has in store for us. (Be sure to add at least one sunrise, sunset and moon picture that is Earls favorite)