Friday, September 22, 2006

A Jordanian Hospital Visit

I was so sick yesterday that I was dehydrated so I had to go to the hospital for an IV. It was interesting to see the Jordanian medical system at work. The Doctor and the Nurse were very good and had a great bedside manner. Everyone there spoke English, which I was grateful for, as I did not really feel like speaking any Arabic. Not only was the service good and quick, I was in and out in about 2 hours, and it was very cheap. It cost a total of about 30 JD or about $42 for the emergency room visit, the medication in the IV and the IV and the two prescriptions. Medical expenses are very cheap here but most people who live here have no medical insurance and have to pay it out of pocket.

The Nurse talked to me about Ramadan, which begins either Saturday or Sunday depending on the moon. This month is holy to Muslims. The subject came up because they were putting up decorations for Ramadan. During Ramadan Muslims fast during daylight hours and eat during the evening. I was told by a cab driver that the first few days are the hardest, as they must refrain from drinking any liquid, smoking, and eating during the day. He said it is especially difficult not to smoke as most of the men here smoke. I am often offered a cigarette in a taxi. Having been a former smoker I know what it is like to have to try and not smoke for a few hours and I also remember how irritable I would become. I thank God that he helped me break the chains of that addiction.

I am told that many Muslims begin a spiritual journey toward the good news during this time than in any other. Dreams and visions are a part of a lot of Muslim’s story of coming to the good news, mostly during Ramadan. I will pray that God crosses my path with some of them.

Posted by LR -- who is feeling some better today.

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