Answers to our Questionnaire for Visitors of Solomon Islands

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Visitor
Sex? female
Profession/occupation? medical student
Home country? Switzerland
What made you want to go to Solomon Islands? information from the university
Arriving in Solomon Islands
When did you arrive in Solomon Islands? September 2002
Did you encounter any bureaucratic difficulties? yes, I recieved only a visa for one month
What was your first impression after arrival? heat
Living in Solomon Islands
What did positively surprise you? the friendly people
What did negatively surprise you? the MEF guys (Malaitan Eagle Force)
What took longest to get used to? the climate
What did you miss most in Solomon Islands? my boyfriend
What should you have brought along? mosquito net
What did you do to prevent malaria? prophylaxis (Malarone)
Place and province where you spent most of your time? Honiara, Honiara-City
Where did you stay? guesthouse and home sitting
How long did you stay at each location? 3 weeks home sitting, 5 weeks in different guesthouses
How much did you pay for each? SBD 100/night for 3 persons in the guesthouse and nothing for the house sitting
Where did you usually eat? for lunch in the hospital cafeteria if there was something, for dinner at home
What did you typically pay for a normal meal? SBD 4
What local food/beverage did you like most? sweet potatoes and bush lime
What local food/beverage did you like least? nothing
Working in Solomon Islands
How did you usually go to work? on foot and by bus
Where did you work? NRH
What was your occupation? medical student [elective]
What were your working days and hours? Monday to Friday from 8 am to 4/5 pm
What was particularly difficult in regard to your work? communication with the old patients, because they don't speak pidgin or English
Did you feel accepted by the locals? yes
What did you usually do in your spare time after work? internet, market, reading...
Leaving Solomon Islands and looking back
When did you leave Solomon Islands? November 2002
How long was your stay? 9 weeks
How do you judge the length of your stay? just about right
What did you learn from the locals? a lot of practical work in the hospital
Your advice to prospective visitors? if you are a women, you should not go alone
What did you miss most when back at home again? the sun, the laughing and friendly people and the fruits
What did you enjoy most when back at home again? a shower
Would you go back for another stay? yes
Estimated total cost of your stay (including travel costs)? travel cost CHF 2,600
Additional comments? it was a very good experience for me!

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