By Phil Montgomery – Phil has taken part in many Chaparda clinics and has recently retired as Trustee of World Medicine.
It was my first day back working in the men’s clinic at Jaye Ambe hospital in the rural district of Chaparda, Gujarat. My first patient awaited me. I remembered his face but sadly can’t recall his name. This was my fourth visit working at the hospital and my patient, a local Sadu monk had visited each time for a succession of treatments. He was 80 plus years of age, dressed in the traditional saffron robes, wearing a full grey beard and moustache. He reminded me very much of a wise and happy Asiatic Father Christmas.
Generally he was in good health but suffered pain in his knees and a decreased mobility brought during the damp colder winter months. His diagnosis generally related to arthritis of the knees. Through the translation he gratefully told me how the treatments would lessen the pain, improve his mobility and last until the weather changed and the warmer months returned. I will never forget his smiling face, appreciative handshake and namaskar.