May 25th, 2015 by Garrett Hooker

I was on call last Thursday and had to go into the ED at 1am for basically a follow up on one of the kids I had seen in clinic.  I think he’s about 1 month old now, but was still having URI symptoms…like I said he would for probably another week.  Had been eating well and vitals were normal, so I told them to come back in the morning if his symptoms worsened.  They never ended up coming back in.  I also had another lady come in at around 3:30 am with sudden onset LLQ abd pain.  I was only able to obtain a limited number of labs, but I’m thinking she either has a kidney stone or ovarian/adnexal torsion.  I sent her for an ultrasound in La Ceiba and told her to come back Monday morning when she can get some other labs done, rather than the middle of the night.


The other patients I saw in clinic Friday were as follows:


– 24 yo F with GERD
– 40 yo M with R inguinal hernia; sent for surgical consult
– 5 month old here for follow up from yesterday.  Has a viral URI, is feeling better, and appears well hydrated
– 7 yo F with viral pharyngitis, molar coming in, and numerous caries.  Set her up with dentist who won’t be here for at least the next month.
– 44 yo F with lipoma on back and lumbar back strain
– 32 yo F here for follow up on R otitis externa.  Still painful and draining after two weeks of antifungal tx
– 7 yo F daughter of one of the lab techs who has a temp to 102.1 F and cough x 1 d.  Looks like pneuomnia on CXR.  Tx with Amox, Doxy, Tylenol
– 9 d old F here for newborn check
– 5 yo M with pruritic rash that started out on face and has spread to extremities and trunk.  I’m not really sure what’s going on but it sort of sounds like tinea versicolor so I treated him with a topical antifungal.
– 74 year old F with uncontrolled DM and atypical CP.  Changed her insulin up a bit because she keeps having hypoglycemic episodes and also checked an EKG on her.
– 62 yo M with arthritis in knees
– 24 yo F with UTI and yeast infection


I should also mention that Oscar, a Honduran guy who acts as one of the chaplains here, invited me to his house in La Ceiba for Carnaval.  Apparently it’s a huge deal in La Ceiba, so I thought that would be an excellent way to spend the day.  Unfortunately I would have to come back before the parade actually started because I would be on call the next morning and there are only a limited number of buses that come out to the hospital.


So, after clinic we headed down to the front gate and waited around for a long time for the bus.  When it arrived, it was already full of people, I assume mostly headed to La Ceiba for Carnaval.




Maybe the bus is just always full, but either way I spent the next two hours standing in the very back trying to not get bucked out the back door.


I should also mention that around this time, Oscar informed me that he loved taking pictures and would be happy to take my phone to help snap a few….so buckle up, there are a lot of pictures ahead.


When we arrived at Jutiapa a bunch more people hopped on board to sell food.



Countryside view from the bus



While we were walking from the bus stop to Oscar’s house, I saw this awesome old Toyota and felt compelled to take a picture of it.


Oscar’s house. When he’s not working at the hospital, he spends the weekends here. His mom, sister, brother, and family friend all stay here as well. There were I think 4-5 bedrooms, one 3/4 bath, a kitchen, dining room, and small living area.


Distrito Toronjal, where Oscar’s house is located. It used to be covered by fields of grapefruit trees, hence the name “grapefruit distict”. You can also see Pico Bonito in the background, which lies just south of the city.


Pretty much right after we arrived, we had to head to Oscar’s church, where he leads a bible study or something. While he was doing that, I kind of explored the church grounds and took this pic from out the window of the unfinished second story.



Surrounding the cementerio municipal is a long wall covered in murals that illustrates the history of the city.



Mas mural


They even have the Zipper here.


While this guy was picking his nose, I was busy laying down some serious fire. In my younger days, I discovered all manner of ways to torture GI Joes…this being a favorite.


I won this necklace with a clip thing on it, and it only cost me the equivalent of $1…no idea what it will be used for, but definitely a steal.


As with all fair food, there are certain risks. This was an especially bold move given the fact that within 18 hours, I’d be going on a non-stop, bumpy, two hour long bus ride back to the hospital…but the carne asada was excelente.


Getting set up for the parade the next day. Right before this, Oscar and I went to Pizza Hut and I was reminded of how awesome pizza is.


Me and Olvin, Oscar’s family friend.



Oscar and Olvin admiring a painting at a galeria de arte we happened upon.


I think this is a school of some sort…I just kind of liked the building.



This magical tree and its rainbow of bark colors


This was apparently the first train in La Ceiba.  I also really like that tall weird palm tree.


Acting like a five year old


All of these park pictures were taken in Swinford Park.









Weird roots


More weird roots


Really old tree


There’s a restaurant called Cafeto in this building I ate at last week when I came to town with Steve and his family.


Dia de Carnaval


Mucha gente


Somehow Oscar got the phone switched over to black and white mode, just to add a little more artistry to his already keen photographic eye.


City market


I think this guy was hauling some plantains if I remember correctly


Oscar and Olvin taking a break from the heat


Down by the beach a bunch of people were getting their horses ready for the parade


Caballos a la playa


This one is hungry


Mas caballos


Muelle nuevo dentro de los ultimos 2 meses


Olvin y Oscar


Mostly just wanted to take a pic of this guy using a selfie-stick


Mas carnaval


Y mas


Al centro


The city’s dignitaries get to sit under the big tents, right on the main strip and in an ideal location for parade viewing. This is a shot from the city’s central park.


I would have loved to stay to watch the parade, but unfortunately had to leave before it began. There are only a limited number of buses that come back out toward the hospital in the afternoon, and since I was going to be on call starting the next morning, I had to make sure I didn’t get stranded in La Ceiba. When I arrived just outside of Balfate, I walked over to that gas station for a few supplies and ran into these two guys herding a bunch of cattle down the road.


I walked with them for a while on the way back toward Balfate. I can’t remember their names, but they said they were 10 and 14 years old and they had 31 head of cattle with them.


Once in Balfate, I had about 20 minutes to watch these guys play a pick-up game while I waited for a moto-taxi to pass by and take me the rest of the way back to the hospital.