PROGRAM: Faculty Placement
WRITTEN BY: Ali Thomas
Before the hard work began, there was some sightseeing to be done! After a day of flights on Monday and a nights sleep in 30 degree heat, our group of 11 and our teacher followed a guide to the Taj Mahal. We were told the history, the do's and don'ts and most importantly, the best angles for photos! No one was underwhelmed by this wonder of the world and our love for India’s beauty, architecture and amazing people had begun. The day was hot as we wandered around being amazed by the symmetry and beauty from every angle. 1 of the 100 group photos taken in front of the incredible Taj Mahal can be seen above.
We had a day to visit Delhi. We caught underground trains to the Red Fort and a few different markets before finding some souvenirs and heading back home for dinner before the trip to Palampur. The overnight bus was an experience for all! Once we had escaped the mosquitoes and found a comfy position, a few of us were able to get some sleep on the bus before arriving at our new home in Palampur. Our little house was nestled in a valley, with beautiful views of the snow-capped Himalayas in the background. A photo of us walking down to our new home for the first time can be seen below. After settling in, we visited our placement sites on Friday for orientation and to get an idea of what the next week and a half had to offer.
Before we knew it, it was the weekend and time for activities. Saturday was the day to experience the local bus ride to visit the traditional Palampur market, a strip of shops catering for all things local; fruit, street food, clothing and toys. We now visit the markets every few afternoons to walk around and usually buy snacks, mainly Nutella! Sunday was a time to conquer fears and get the best view of our surroundings: paragliding over the Himalayas! The drive up to our take off spot was possibly more scary than the paragliding down. A thin road shared by too many cars on the cliff edge left most of us with jelly legs before we even saw where we'd be jumping off! The safety briefing was just that; brief! Before we knew it, we were strapped in with our pilot and running down a hill before the parachute took us up off the ground and we enjoyed 15 minutes of spins and floats down to the town. A photo of the amazing view from the top can be seen below.
Let the Physiotherapy Begin
After a few tourist activities and plenty of sight seeing, it was time to become immersed in the culture by attending our placement sites to see how physiotherapists worked in India. During week 1, 4 of us went to private practices, 4 of us attended the Rotary school for children with special needs and 3 of us carried out home visits to those who had difficulty leaving their house for physiotherapy treatment. During the middle of the second week, a few of us will swap over to experience a different side of physiotherapy in India at a difference site.
The first week and a half has been an amazing whirlwind of activities, new experiences, sight seeing and getting to know each other better. Next week will give you an insight into our day to day experiences at each of the different placement sites.
All the photos in this blog have been taken by myself, other students or our teacher. Thanks to everyone who let me borrow them!