Thursday, October 22, 2009


I didn't sneeze. Did you sneeze? Didn't think so.

How many of you saw the movie "Patch Adams" with Robin Williams? Raise your hands.
you, in North Carolina, is that your hand up? yes? five...
Ohio? is your hand up? no?

Okay, 7 of my 8 loyal readers have seen the movie.

So, Patch Adams is really Hunter Campbell Adams, MD,
a physician who believes in treating the soul as well as the body through joy, humor, and laughter.

In the movie, you may remember that he started a free clinic in the mountains,
and when the end credits rolled, we learned that his free hospital, The Gesundheit! Institute,
had been built and was treating patients.


That teensy, tiny, little inaccuracy has severely hindered fund raising efforts to build the hospital
(uh, why do I have to donate money to build a hospital that's already there, huh?)
but it raised awareness, and now Patch spends most of his time on the road and around the world teaching, clowning, raising global awareness, fundraising for the hospital, and trying to improve the accessibility of health care.

In fact, participating in his humanitarian clown missions to Russia is listed as one of the
100 Best Worldwide Vacations to Enrich Your Life.

Here is the timeline of Gesundheit!'s evolution.

And this is Patch's vision, in his words.

The Gesundheit! Institute is located in Pocohontas County, West Virginia on 317 acres and maintained by a small staff,
one of whom is Patch's brother, "Wildman" Adams.

(click on image to make it bigger)

They participate heavily in volunteerism and student internships. Volunteers? Hmmmmm . . . .

Why am I blathering on & on about all this?

Because October is National Physical Therapy Month, and that is my profession du jour.
So, what does that have to do with Patch Adams?
During our planning of PT month activities at work, the subject of Patch Adams somehow came up,
and someone (I can't remember who, although I have been blamed for it)
mentioned wouldn't it be fun to volunteer at his place in West Virginia blah blah blah.

Now, saying something like that in front of our boss is like setting a match to kindling.
She took it and ran with it like ol' Patch himself was chasing her.
So, bright & early tomorrow morning, we will all pile into a great big van and drive for hours & hours
to West Virginia to spend the weekend volunteering at Gesundheit!
We will enrich our lives.

Patch won't be there. Let's see, this weekend he will be in Malaysia, I believe.

I have no idea what we will be doing in the middle of nowhere.
We'll find out when we get there, wherever 'there' is.
But with someone named "Wildman" in charge, it oughta be fun, huh?

I just went to find the link for Patch's event in Malaysia, and
it has been postponed until January!
Does that mean . . .
Could it be . . .
Will Patch come home to the mountains?

I can just see you guys glued to the edge of your seats until we all find out.


nana said...

Pocahontas County!! That's right next door to my old stomping grounds in Bath County, VA. As a matter of fact, Pocahontas County, West Virginia and Highland and Bath counties of VA are referred to as the Allegheny Highlands of the 2 Virginias. I'm envious. I knew Patch Adams' place was in West Virginia but I didn't know how close. I want a map and to hear all about it when you get back! Love, Nana

Sista G said...

From the other Sis - that sounds really wonderful and invigorating for the body and spirit!! And you're going with your army of good spirits, too -good for you guys!!