STORY TIME

Excerpts From The Class WhatsApp page

Saturday, 14th January, 2023

Every hour

Random person: Please what time does the bus come? And where does it stop?

***************

Sunday

Absolutely no one:

My mother: Tell a colleague to call you tomorrow when they wake up so that you won’t miss the bus

Monday at 5:18am

The bus is in

Now, tell me why I deserted my bed at 5:44am to get to Korle-bu only to sit around waiting till 8am. It feels like the first day of the school year having to stop to wave at or say hello to familiar faces. I haven’t seen some of these faces in a long while even though we’ve (probably) sat in the same meetings virtually since November.

Oh! Before I forget to mention: Welcome to KorleBu John Hopkins where we must absolutely start the first day of in-person class with an Interim Assessment. Yayy. Of course, this was in no way due to some malicious intent. The authorities did postpone the dreaded IA a number of times. I guess it’s just our luck.

When 8am finally comes, we file into the hall and tackle the test for an hour and a half. What may come of that is anyone’s guess. More importantly, that left us with a full hour before our first dissection room experience. In that hour, I was not necessarily excited nor scared. Just filled with anticipation.

Before DR comes though, we need to sign for bone boxes and I admit that I did not expect to see what I saw. Really, I don’t even know what I expected to see but those lifeless bones weren’t it. And before you say anything, I knew they were lifeless but considering their origins, I suppose some part of me expected to see some semblance of… life? Never mind, I’m probably not making any sense here.

 

Now to DR. Not a single soul fainted. Not that I expected them to of course; my classmates are made of hard stuff. One of the rules in the DR is “No photography of any kind “. Oddly enough. Now I’m wondering if that was a new directive or it always existed? Perhaps my mind has been conjuring its own images of seniors in the DR.

 

Anyways, the issue of the cadaver. I have a hard time reconciling the two states of this body in my mind.  This body which cannot feel now, once felt and perhaps even loved. In the moment, I use about five minutes to psyche myself and I start gradually by touching his shoulder, then his chest. Maybe one day, I’ll gather enough courage to touch his head but until then, we concern ourselves with the dissection of the day.

Talk of newbies and lack of skill. We required assistance to fix even scalpel blades – it’s remarkably more difficult than it seems. And oh, we made a few deep incisions… okay, scratch that, we made a lot of deep incisions. There was a buzz of excitement in the air that made the session move quickly and excitingly, I dare say. Who knew locating muscles and nerves could be so thrilling.

 

Suddenly, it is 4:30pm and everyone is rushing out like they rushed in because absolutely nobody wants to miss the bus or stand in said bus for the two hour journey back. For all the talk about the big bus and its air conditioning, I think I prefer the small bus because what I really want is to get back to campus early.

 

Then, it’s 10pm and I’m dozing off behind the slides I’m supposed to be studying for my IA tomorrow. This is after (and probably due to) the waakye I got from Night Market immediately after arrival at 7pm.

 

Just so you know, I do not last long struggling against sleep so it’s good night guys, minutes later.

Spoiler: I will happen to miss the bus a few days later, special thanks to oversleeping.

 

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