It's been a hectic couple of days getting ready for the first group of people who'll be getting on Golden Dawn with me. Captain Craig and the crew have been busy prepping the boat, and I've been helping out where I can. Everything's looking good, and we'll be picking passengers up at the airport and from Lololata Island Resort tomorrow.
In the midst of all the activity, Craig took me to see a little girl he's been helping. Her name is Gaudi. She has meningitis...an infection that affects the outside of the brain. Gaudi just turned one year old recently, and she's been sick for about four months.
Gaudi's father Naume asked Craig for help when his daughter fell ill, and Craig, being the incredibly nice guy he is, has been sending money for the past four months...without ever having seen Gaudi.
Given that Craig has paid a lot of money over the past four months, you'd think Gaudi's family were long-time friends of his. No. Craig met Naume, Gaudi's father, only about a year ago. Craig had a bit of car trouble, and Naume happened to wander by with some mates and helped out. Naume catches and sells crabs for a living, so Craig has been buying crabs from him ever since.
That was the extent of their relationship.
Craig visited Gaudi in the hospital for the first time about ten days ago, and as he described it, was heartbroken by the sight. Little Gaudi was frozen stiff in pain, entirely unable to function.
When I saw her today, she was better. There was recognition in her eyes, and she even grabbed my finger...holding tight, if only for a moment. She's still weak, but the medicine that Craig's been paying for is apparently working. Gaudi is getting better.
It's easy to get absorbed in our own lives, our own problems...all the tasks at hand. But experiences like this are a vital reality check...a reminder of the importance of helping other people. I'm not sure how much longer it'll take for Gaudi to get better, but Craig's committed to seeing her through to recovery.
AlI told, I spent about half an hour with Naume and his family at the hospital. I put together this little video for Craig to show passengers on Golden Dawn, in case any of his clients decide to chip in for Gaudi's medicine. The people who were on Craig's last cruise contributed about US$170, which will go a long way to sustaining Gaudi through her recovery.