He spent the first year of his residency in Saudi Arabia. While he made money there, he says that one year was enough for him: “Extremely conservative Islamic countries are very ‘abnormal.’ You have to be careful what you say. You can’t look at women. If you do look at one, it’s seen as her fault and she’s the one who is blamed!”
Kenrick then joined the Red Cross and was assigned to Zambia, where he worked in a 100-bed hospital that had only four doctors. He says that their patients were all seriously ill, suffering from issues such as peritonitis, bowel obstructions, and obstructed labor. With so many patients to treat, he worked more than 100 hours per week. Making matters still more challenging, the position was unpaid and he was expected to cover his own living expenses. “I spent nearly all I had. Taiwan, on the other hand, offered everything I could want, plus a salary of NT$20,000 per month,” recalls a smiling Kenrick, contrasting his experiences in the two countries.
Kenrick is an avid cyclist who got into the sport at the age of 15, and regularly rode more than 100 km at a time. After arriving in Taiwan, he became enamored with riding the mountainous trails through Taitung’s villages. In those days, he not only worked at St. Mary’s, but also visited indigenous villages to treat patients with a trained nurse and anesthetist named Sister Patricia Aycock. Taiwan’s National Health Insurance system didn’t yet exist, so they cared for patients who couldn’t afford to pay free of charge.