Answers to our Questionnaire for Visitors of Solomon Islands

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Sex? female
Profession/occupation? Medical Student
Home country? United Kingdom
What made you want to go to Solomon Islands? previous students recommended
Arriving in Solomon Islands
When did you arrive in Solomon Islands? August 2006
Did you encounter any bureaucratic difficulties? no
What was your first impression after arrival? Culture shock but very friendly!
Living in Solomon Islands
What did positively surprise you? People - very very welcoming
What did negatively surprise you? Kiwi-House! (at first, but we grew to love it)
What took longest to get used to? The dust and dirt of Honiara
What did you miss most in Solomon Islands? Nothing, I loved the change!
What should you have brought along? Small-sized latex gloves, essential medicines for the hospital
What did you do to prevent malaria? Mosquito net, Malarone, coils, DEET
Place and province where you spent most of your time? Honiara, Honiara-City
Other places/provinces where you stayed? Gizo, Western Province
Where did you stay? United Church Rest House; Kiwi House; Phoebe's Guesthouse
How long did you stay at each location? 1.5 weeks; 4 weeks; 2 weeks
How much did you pay for each? SBD 50 average
Where did you usually eat? Home, restaurants
What did you typically pay for a normal meal? SBD 80 (expensive!) in restaurants; SBD 20 for home
What local food/beverage did you like most? The fresh fish and vegetables from the market
What local food/beverage did you like least? SolBrew!
Mobile phone services
If you brought along a mobile phone, which services did you successfully use? voice
Comments? Worked for domestic but not international calls.
Money matters
Used Thomas Cook Travellers Cheques in US$ to get cash.
Used HSBC debit card (Maestro) to get cash at ATMs and to pay for goods/services.
Used HSBC credit card (MasterCard) to get cash at ATMs.
Working in Solomon Islands
How did you usually go to work? walk
Where did you work? NRH, paediatrics department
What was your occupation? medical student elective placement
What were your working days and hours? Monday-Friday. From 8.30am. Flexible time depending on things happening
What was particularly difficult in regard to your work? sometimes had to hang around
Did you feel accepted by the locals? yes
What did you usually do in your spare time after work? go to the market, internet, trips around Guadalcanal
Questions for medical trainees of all levels (students to registrars)
How was the supervision? close
How was the teaching? good
Leaving Solomon Islands and looking back
When did you leave Solomon Islands? October 2006
How long was your stay? 6 weeks
How do you judge the length of your stay? too short
What did you learn from the locals? Pijin, to chill out, to be more sociable and friendly
Your advice to prospective visitors? This country is amazing and a forgotten paradise in the northern hemisphere. Solomon Islanders are fantastic!
What did you miss most when back at home again? The guaranteed hot weather, the scenery, Dr Betty Wini, the people, the fresh fish... everything!
What did you enjoy most when back at home again? Hot water! (but only because we arrived back home in winter and it was freezing!)
Would you go back for another stay? Anytime!
Estimated total cost of your stay (including travel costs)? GBP 2,000
Additional comments? [-]

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DEET: N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide, also known as N,N-diethyl-3-methylbenzamide, an insect repellent