Time to meet the neighborhood


The “neighborhood” of the 7th floor. This introduction was the most memorable. I had hardly left the room before I began to observe the full range of sights and sounds on a cancer ward—a very old woman asleep with her mouth wide open in the semi- dark, alone; a mother holding the hands of two children as they walked into a room to visit a man who must be their father; a distant laugh and then, seconds later, some nearby crying. Dozens of people were struggling with cancer on a single floor, each one a complicated life. all these unimaginable stories, all these lives in danger and the larger set of lives deeply affected by their struggles.

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