Thankful, Semester at Sea and the Weekly Photo Challenge

I’m linking this up with The Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge. The theme this week is is Thankful. As I mentioned before, we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving in South Africa. Nevertheless, I’ve attended a couple of Thanksgiving dinners before and I love the idea of some good gratefulness. I am inclined to become a little whiny. Christine at Bookishly Boisterous made a list of 100 things she is grateful for. I’m going to try that too. Let’s see if I can do this! (Photo elaboration at bottom of page)

1. Semester at Sea looks like it is going to happen! One of the companies I approached for sponsorship contacted me to say that my request has been approved. I am keeping my excitement on the down-low until our agreement has been made and the amount has been transferred, but I have reason to believe that it will work out!

2. This post by Solitary Diner, who very kindly advertised my Semester at Sea GoFundMe campaign.

3. The four individuals who donated to the GoFundMe campaign, totaling $85 so far. Your faith in my dream means so much and your donations were truly appreciated. I will (after consulting with these individuals) use the donations to contribute to my textbooks, which are not included in the tuition fee and are quite pricey.

4. The Spring 2013 SAS students and staff, whom I have met through a Facebook group. They are a wonderful group of people and their enthusiasm is catching.

5. Travel books are great for dreaming and for anxiety-relief. And the pictures are so pretty.

6. My family, who are actually first on this list. This is one cliche I don’t mind. They are the ones I miss most when I am at university. They have supported me through all my crazy dreams and despite my teenage inclinations.

7. My little sister getting accepted to study Occupational Therapy.

8. Modern medicine, which ensured that I could be relieved of extreme pain and not lose my thumb, and also keeps my family healthy and safe.

9. That Mom’s pain is much less this year.

10. That Dad never allowed his visual impairment to ruin his life prospects.

11. The Boy, who recently drove 1,000 km to surprise me.

12. The Boy’s cooking abilities, which ensures that I have at least three square meals during school time. I can’t cook.

13. …and that he isn’t overbearing and we both have space to breathe and follow our dreams.

14. Some really crazy and funny friends at medical school.

15. A clinical partner with whom I get along swimmingly.

16. The odd inspiring professor (they are few and far between).

17. Talley and O’Connor’s Clinical Examination

18. Youth Journalism International’s excellent work the world over…

19. …and their wonderful people.

20. Two years on elected student government…

21. …and that those two years are now over and done with.

22. A patient driving instructor.

23. The opportunity to study Medicine (I though long and hard about this one).

24. That I am two-thirds of the way through Med School.

25. That I will never ever (ever ever ever ever) have to be in second year Med School again.

26. My raspberry pink stethoscope

27. The MedScape iPad app

28. Dermatology – the good marks I got for it boosted my self-confidence

29. Anaesthetics – was really difficult and taught me how to study more efficiently. And brought me back to basics for many organ systems.

30. Scrub pants: the most comfortable pants you will ever wear.

31. Surgical gloves

32. That I have not had a needle prick injury or a body fluid exposure.

33. Post-exposure Prophylaxis availability should I or my colleagues have the unfortunate experience above.

34. Paediatrics

35. Neonatal wards

35. Chocolate (ALL THE CHOCOLATES!)

36. Nougatelli cookies

37. Nutella straight from the bottle

38. Clean drinking water

39. Electricity

40. A stable roof over my head

41. Lightning conductors

42. Summer dresses and shorts

43. Seasons – I get bored easily

44. Student loans (even though I’ll be paying off on them til I’m 40)

45. Those journalists who aren’t gullible

46. Those teachers who teach passionately

47. Engineers and pilots and others whose daily work affects our safety

48. Fresh food in the shops

49. Traveling to China last year.

50. Traveling to Montreal, New York and Connecticut in 2010.

51. The changemakers I met while at iRYLA 2010.

52. Dishwashing liquid

53. The radio

54. Glee

55. Grey’s Anatomy

56. That I have all my senses

57. Contact lenses

58. Books

59. The joy of reading

60. Libraries

61. Bookshops, even when I can’t afford to purchase anything.

62. The internet

63. The medical blogging community

64. The book blogging community

65. Vaccinations

66. A relatively high pain threshold

67. Clouds

68. Green Cross shoes

69. My high school, which gave me some of the best years of my life.

70. Debating coaches and teachers who keep in touch

71. Instant messaging

72. My room in Cape Town, which is actually a tin can but I live very comfortably there.

73. Air conditioning in my tin can

74. Rooibos tea

75. Painkillers

76. The doctors out there who are still passionate about their work

77. Cameras and photos

78. The “First World Problems” and African kid memes. Perspective FTW.

79. The ocean and that I live so close to it

80. Weather forecasts

81. Dogs and cats

82. Anti-histamines

83. The Collins Xhosa Phrasebook, without which I would not have survived my Eastern Cape elective

84. TED Talks

85. History

86. Living in an age where I can meet and befriend men and women regardless of sexual orientation, race or beliefs.

87. Fire extinguishers

88. That my little brother is turning out to be an exemplary young man (who entertains us with great music)

89. PostSecret

90. Cartoon T-shirts, regardless of my age

91. My memory

92. The freedom of choice

93. Mountains, valleys and all of nature to hike and explore.

94. UVA and UVB protection

95. The Bodyshop products

96. Dolce & Gabanna Light Blue

97. Lavender, lilies and roses

98. Not living in poverty, even though I am a far way from self-sustaining

99. Ample inspiration

100. People – this seems most fitting. I am so grateful for people: my family, my friends, and the people I don’t even know.

It took me over an hour to compile the list, but I feel so blessed. As for the photo, it is of the basketball court on the M/V Explorer, which is Semester at Sea’s ship. This photo felt like me: standing behind the nets, watching but not participating. And now I will very likely have the opportunity to finally emerge onto the metaphorical court myself. And maybe learn some basketball too.


  1. kz says:

    Dolce & Gabanna Light Blue, Glee, and painkillers — definitely ^^ quite a it ^^

  2. tight shoes says:

    Woo hoo on the fulfillment of dreams. So glad to hear that Semester at Sea may be happening after all. Will definitely second you on Green Cross shoes, I just bought my 2nd pair in 2 months!

    1. Those Green Cross shoes are sometimes the only thing that keep me alive on long hospital rounds! Definitely worth the spending money.
      Thanks for being excited along with me – here’s hoping it works!

  3. This is a great list! You are twice blessed. Once because you are, and twice because you know it. Best wishes.

    1. Thank you, that’s a great axiom. I’ve written it down and stuck it on my wall!

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s