I did not realise how prophetic the title of the first blog post from Beirut was going to be. As we have dug into the meat of the course, people have got more and more excited about lifesaving, and the amount of times I have heard “we have to do this again soon, and next time we will… [insert huge idea]” is just ridiculous – it is amazing, and I cannot wait.
I would be lying if I said the course has been smooth sailing. As with everything in Lebanon, there are generally some vagaries around times, and we had two late replacements on the course for some people who pulled out at the last minute.
The LifeSupport 3 tests were passed with flying colours, and a few interested discussions around the variance between Lebanese protocols (they follow the AHA) and the RLSS protocols. By and large they agreed, but an interesting difference around opening airway on a baby – which I need to do a bit more research around.
As we dug into the juicier theory topics during the lesson planning – more and more technical questions were coming out, which lead to some interesting conversations, but it really was hard to keep these guys confined to Survive & Save. They are just thirsty for knowledge, I have no other way to describe it. It is a total privilege to be the one who gets to teach them.
The planning for Friday is done, and I think the group are looking forward to that. Saturdays overall structure is sorted, but there are still a few people (all of them) that have still got a few sessions to plan. We are basically running a big rotating workshop. So in groups of six, the kids move around different activities every 45 minutes with a 15 minute break for faff. Loads of teaching, loads of activities, loads of chaos, and a very long night last night for me with a whiteboard trying to make a system that worked.
This morning, we went to an amazing shop to buy a few teaching supplies for the lifesaving training. Honestly, this place was just one shop, that was basically eBay. It had everything – all made in China. Wheelie bins, chandeliers, tools, ballet costumes, hiking boots, ornamental garden fountains, you name it… it was there. In one shopping trip, we managed to kit out an entire lifesaving club for practically no money at all…. floating ropes, reach poles (trusty wooden broom handle – available in three different lengths), plastic containers available in every size from 500ml to 20L, bandages, done.
The sobering thing about that shopping trip was Laudy telling me where bombs had been set of recently… in particular, by the school bus stop, just two minutes after the bus her three kids were on had left. The previous post was all about the fun things of Lebanon, and it really is great… but the challenges (what an alarmingly PC word) the country faces are immense.
Everything seems to be coming together nicely. We have even managed to find time to fit in their Open Water Endorsement – next week.
All that remains now, is to wait up until 4am to make sure that Becky gets here OK.