You know as a Doctor, you can live a more luxurious life.
There's really no need to be out in that.
Luxurious? I'll show you luxurious! I live on a tropical island. Not a private one, of course, but a tropical island none the less. I live in a house that has all the amenities I need, and that has a view that would require me going into a higher-paid specialty to afford in the US. We have something like 85 different kinds of flowers in our yard. It's rare that there's not a ripening stalk of fresh bananas, the best-tasting in the world (what you get in stores in N America taste like styrofoam to me), hanging on my back porch just to pick and enjoy as I walk past. And either from my garden or from a friend's the best-flavored, sweetest pineapple I've ever tasted. That's luxurious!
We have hot and cold running water in both our k-word and our bathroom! Do you have any idea what a small percentage of the world's population has that? It's actually a rare thing. And an indoor toilet. I believe that over half of the people in the world haven't even seen one. That's luxurious.
I have a computer (actually, several) with a fairly-reliable internet connection. Most of the people in the world have not yet seen a computer. And a phone. Several. A couple are attached to wires, and we can call our friends and neighbors here on the station, or I can call the hospital, or receive calls about patients, so no one has to walk to my house to relay messages. That's a luxury that few people in the world enjoy. And we have a couple of little phones that fit in our pockets, and we can push a button or two on them and be talking with our relatives on the other side of the world. Less than a generation ago my missionary predecessors couldn't communicate any faster than postal letters, which at times took months to arrive. That's a pretty nice thing for us.
In the US I had to get in my car and drive 12 minutes to work, because I worked and lived in a small town. Many of you have to drive for hours to get to work. That's a hardship. I have a 3-minute commute that costs me nothing. I go home for lunch. That's luxury.
And on top of that, for the past couple of years, we've been able to receive a television station! We can actually sit in our living room and watch the news of the world. That's a luxury.
And I have the most varied, interesting and at times even exciting medical practice that I can imagine. I go from treating congenital clubfoot one minute to treating some guy with his head chopped open with an axe the next. I do procedures that I'd be pressured to refer to a specialist if I were practicing in the US, just for CYA liability-suit fears on the part of my insurance company. My patients are gracious and grateful. I get to work with people I like. That's pretty nice!
My wife and I get to spend most of our evenings sitting together, watching TV (either the one local channel or season sets of favorite shows, or shows that have been recorded and burned to DVD by friends or family), or entertaining interesting, witty friends. Weekends we can hike or go for drives or just hang out. We eat wholesome, fresh food. All luxuries.
I work out in a gym that has all of the equipment I need, and most of what I want. Rarely is there music that I don't like; I usually get to play whatever I want. I do have to take my turn sweeping the floor, or occasionally mopping and scrubbing, but what the hey? It's well-ventilated, even though the fan is broken (why doesn't someone get rid of it? It will probably sit there for months.) Not as luxurious as some of the gyms that I was in on our recent home assignment, but I love it, and it feels pretty good to be back to it.
Rusty water for a week or two every couple of years is nothing. We have a filter that we run our drinking water through if we are getting it from the well. If it's from the rain tank, we don't bother. Either way, it is pure and good. Clean water, I want to be clear, is a luxury in this world.
So please don't feel sorry for me. I'm doing exactly what I love doing, and living exactly where I want to live. And please, don't give me the stuff about what a good person I am. I'm not. I'm just a guy who is doing what he thinks God wants him to do. I'm no better than most of you, worse than some of you.
There. That's my rant for the evening. Or the night, actually. It's almost 2 AM, and I'm on my new program to get 8 hours. Oscar, this is your fault.