Monday was to be her last day of work in her little jungle clinic in Kono. Yesterday, Tuesday, she was to leave Kono for Freetown, this time by helicopter, thank goodness. Her last trip from Port Loko to Kono was six hours of being thrown around in a truck over torn-up roads.
Today, Wednesday, she has a free day in Freetown which she plans to spend at the beach.
And that's when I'll start to worry.
In all honesty I feel more anxious for her well-being when she arrives in Newark than I have the whole time she was in Sierra Leone. Even though the Ebola hysteria from a few months back seems to have died down in the general population I'm worried about how she'll be treated when she arrives at customs. Aside from the ordeal of nurse Kaci Hickox I've heard horror stories of health-care workers returning from West Africa being held for hours in small rooms at customs and missing their connecting flights. Or having the police called on them as if they were criminals for going into a plague-stricken country to try and rescue the most vulnerable people on the planet.
Of course one hopes that things have changed since the time Kaci Hickox was used as a pawn by Chris Christie and Maine Governor Paul Lepage to score political points for themselves from the national Ebola scare. One hopes that Newark airport now operates under a more scientifically enlightened and less politically-driven policy than was in effect several months ago.
It's not even that I fear that Claire will be in any real physical danger when she goes through customs.
I just don't want her to be mistreated. I don't want her to be the victim of ignorance or politics on her return to her country. I don't want her to be be submitted to any undue roughness even if it's only verbal. Her heart is too kind. Her soul is too good.
I hope by tomorrow afternoon I'll be able to admit that I was being ridiculously anxious and that my worries were for nothing.
I'll keep you posted.