If you get selected for surgery aboard the USNS Comfort you board the ship the day before and spend the night in the Comfort Inn. It's a luxurious ward of bunk beds (I'm not kidding here) where you and one escort can come. Here are some pictures from one evening when we were singing and dancing with the patients.
It was fun to meet the patients the night before their surgeries so that I could be a familiar face in the PACU when they woke up. This particular night I met a young man of 14 who was a little embarrassed about his hernia surgery the next day. It turns out what he really wanted was to see a helicopter. I had my camera around my neck and being digital I could show him a picture I took on the flight deck earlier in the day.
Our conversation was overheard by one of the helicopter crew and the next thing I know we have all the Jamaican patients and their escorts on the flight deck crawling in the helicopter. It was definately one of those get forgiveness later kind of events. Nothing beats a smile though, so it was worth it.