Answers to our Questionnaire for Visitors of Solomon Islands

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Visitor
Sex? male
Profession/occupation? MD
Home country? Switzerland
What made you want to go to Solomon Islands? talking to a previous visitor
Arriving in Solomon Islands
When did you arrive in Solomon Islands? March 2003
Did you encounter any bureaucratic difficulties? no, with Hermann it was easy
What was your first impression after arrival? very exhausted
Living in Solomon Islands
What did positively surprise you? There is some organisation.
What did negatively surprise you? [-]
What took longest to get used to? the heat
What did you miss most in Solomon Islands? nothing
What should you have brought along? we were well prepared
What did you do to prevent malaria? insect repellent, "western" life style (house with light,...)
Place and province where you spent most of your time? Honiara, Honiara-City
Where did you stay? first in a guesthouse (Travellers Motel), then in a house (Seventh-day Adventist compound)
How long did you stay at each location? 1 month and 10 months
How much did you pay for each? SBD 1400 and SBD 2000
Where did you usually eat? lunch: hospital cafeteria or Seoul cafeteria in the city, dinner at home
What did you typically pay for a normal meal? SBD 10 to 50
What local food/beverage did you like most? Solbrew and Sr Esther Motu fish
What local food/beverage did you like least? [-]
Working in Solomon Islands
How did you usually go to work? by bus
Where did you work? NRH
What was your occupation? doctor (registrar)
What were your working days and hours? Mo-Fr + some on-call duty depending on the number of interns
What was particularly difficult in regard to your work? keep clean hands...
Did you feel accepted by the locals? yes
What did you usually do in your spare time after work? read, read, read, or dinners with friends
Leaving Solomon Islands and looking back
When did you leave Solomon Islands? January 2004
How long was your stay? 11 months
How do you judge the length of your stay? just about right
What did you learn from the locals? pidgin English, clinical and surgical skills
Your advice to prospective visitors? be open minded
What did you miss most when back at home again? the wide horizon, the heat, the people in the hospital
What did you enjoy most when back at home again? to have had this wonderful experience and tell family and friends about it
Would you go back for another stay? Anytime!
Estimated total cost of your stay (including travel costs)? a lot, but it was definitely worth it
Additional comments? Go there to learn something, e.g. how other people live. Try to ignore how much money you spend and enjoy your sparetime (travel to other islands, ...). It is very remote, so keep in mind you may never get another chance to do things you postponed.

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