2019 SLAOTI/POSNA TF - Day 10

Day 10 –
Waking up this morning in Calamuchita Valley to the calm serenity of the farm was wonderful. Salil had to depart early to the airport (thank you to Dr. Javier Masquijo for waking up early after a late night to get him there!), Apurva went for a run, and Coleen struggled with a bad cold but did sun salutation to welcome a new day - all thankful for our beautiful, tranquil surroundings and the wonderful day prior that we had shared with so many new and talented friends from Córdoba.


Apurva and Coleen had breakfast with Dr. and Mrs. Willis and Dr. Allende and her husband Carlos – toast with local cherry jam and tea was a wonderful way to start the day.  Dr. Allende then drove us back to Córdoba and the car-ride back gave us more time to share stories of our lives and experiences with one another – truly a bonding trip!  Once back in Córdoba, we shared a final meal together with Dr. Allende and then she dropped the four of us at the airport – with the Willis’ heading off to one side of Argentina and Apurva and Coleen traveling to Iguazú Falls.  With the Chile portion of our trip cancelled, we figured we would take this opportunity to see one of the Natural Seven Wonders of the World before heading home early from our fellowship.  We said our good-byes to Dr. Allende and tried to express our profound appreciation for the amazing experience she and her team gave us in Córdoba – truly a trip none of us will forget. 
After sharing one final coffee together in the airport, we parted ways with the Dr. Baxter and Susan Willis – we were so fortunate to have had extra days with them to hear about their lives and to discuss orthopaedics and life as an orthopaedic family – they have such rich stories to tell.  Truly fortunate to have been able to get to know them and honored to now consider them friends.
Although our trip was cut-short, we had a phenomenal experience on this Traveling Fellowship. We are appreciative of the work of Dr. Juan Carlos Hernandez and Dr. Cristian Artigas Preller, who planned the Santiago portion of our visit that we were not able to attend due to the civil unrest in Chile. Our hearts go out to all of the organizers of the joint SLAOTI-EPOS-POSNA meeting that were not able to realize the fruits of their labor in having the meeting come to fruition.  We hope someday to meet those in Chile that we were not able to visit with on this trip. We hope that the people and government of Chile find resolution and peace soon.
We are so thankful to our new friends and colleagues in Curítiba, Buenos Aires, and Córdoba for being so welcoming, for giving so much of their time and energy to us, and for making this amazing traveling fellowship possible.  This fellowship introduced us to orthopaedics in South America, which is advanced and innovative, but even more importantly we have made friendships that we hope will continue and grow throughout our orthopaedic lives – both between the three of us and with all of the amazing orthopaedic surgeons that we have been fortunate to meet along the way of this adventure!
We cannot adequately express our appreciation to all those that made this possible: POSNA and those POSNA members who have donated to make the traveling fellowship program possible, Dr. Lori Karol who served as Chair of the planning committee, Melody Raymond from the POSNA staff who worked tirelessly to make all of our travel arrangements and orchestrated the coordination of our trip, Professor Luiz Antonio Munhoz da Cunha and his team at Hospital Pequeno Príncipe in Curítiba, Dr. Jami Soni and his teams at Hospital Univ Cajuru and Hospital do Trabalhador, Dr. Juan Carlos Couto and his team at FLENI and the team at Hospital Pedro De Elizalde in Buenos Aires, Dr. Victoria Allende and her team in Córdoba at Sanatorio Allende, Dr. Alexandre Arkader from POSNA and SLAOTI.  We will be forever thankful for this opportunity.   To all of our new friends - please take us up on our offers to visits our home cities and allow us to repay the hospitality that you have shared with us. 
Pediatric orthopaedics is in good hands in South America.  Thank you for all you have taught and shared with us.
This ends our blog, as our travelling fellowship has effectively come to an end.  Thank you for reading and for sharing in our travels.
Con mucho cariño,
Coleen, Apurva and Salil


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