Friday, February 19, 2010


Tomorrow, Sunday February 21st, I will be leaving Petchaburi and moving to the north/east of Thailand for a month. The new province is called Amnat Charoen. I will don't know anything yet so I'll have to write more as soon as I can.

Love you all,

Monday, February 15, 2010

Wedding, Temple, and the Goodbyes Begin

Well I know it’s not in the title but it did happen and I think that I will just take a paragraph or two to tell about last week’s community service.

On Tuesday Lucas, Jason, and I went to the little school that we had gone to the previous week. We had prepared some lessons and divided up who was going to teach what and for how long. As we were driving there Lucas decided that he didn’t want to do anything so I ended up with double. I taught Tongue Twisters and Telling Time. We taught Modeums 1,2 and 6 (grades 7,8, and 12). I also helped Jason with his activity. Jason had created a list of various things falling under 6 categories and he would say a word and they would have to rush up to the board to choose the right category. The group that got the most points got a prize. It was fun.

On Wednesday we went to a couple of elementary schools. We taught colors and shapes, we did some fruits and vegetables, worked on the alphabet and counting, taught them “Duck, Duck, Goose” and “The Hokey Pokey”. They were all so cute and so interested in learning. They would repeat everything we said and were very good at listening.

Alright so now I will get to the title stuff.

Yesterday, Valentine’s Day, I went to a wedding. In Thailand it is customary to invite everybody, even people you don’t know, to everything. Bashayer was telling me that she went to a funeral for the cousin of her host sister’s friend’s friend. They didn’t know the person but they went anyway. The same was for the wedding. I don’t know how they knew or if they knew the people getting married but we went.

First the monks come and bless them and do some sort of ceremony, we only caught the end because we were late. Then the bride and groom sit on stools with these tables in front of them and flowers in front of the tables, while people come and bless them and pour water on their hands. They are connected by two circles of flowers on their heads. All the adults had to go and bless them and pour the water on their hands, I don’t know why.

After everybody had finished they took some pictures with people (in Thailand they take the wedding photos several weeks before the wedding). By this time it was about 12 PM and time for lunch. We went down the block (about ½ a block) and there were tents set up for us to sit and eat. They served us the same food that is served at every event (and I mean every, they never vary it up even a little). I by now know the things I do like and don’t.

After we finished eating we had to leave because Meow had an Ortho appointment and then she had to meet with Eddie (one of the English teachers) for private lessons because she did not pass her English test to go to the US next year. I ended up sitting in the English Corner reading for 3 hours because my host mom told me to go with her and then one girl was an hour late so they had to go an hour longer.

Last night after the store was closed we went to a celebration at a new temple (not that they need another, there are like 6 on my way to school as it is). For the celebration they set up the whole place like a party/celebration thing just like they did for every other party I’ve been to here (food and carnival games included). The only difference was the temple and the monks. The temple had 9 balls all around it and you had to go and put the gold foil on each one. After the ceremony they put the balls into the ground as some sort of religious thing. Then you go around and do various other religious things like give money, give some things to the monks, pray, and some other things I couldn’t figure out.

After they had done all the religious stuff we walked around and the kids played various games. They won a pink pillow playing darts (no idea what they plan on doing with it). They bought food (no surprise since Thai people are always eating snacks but never meals). We did various things for about 2 hours then decided it was time to head home.

Now the last topic spreads a little and is not totally about things that have been happening but things that have been running through my head.

So Friday was Martin (the boy from Alaska), Jason, and Lucas’s last day. It was really sad to have to say goodbye to them. I won’t ever see Jason or Martin again and I don’t know if or when I will see Lucas again. It made me really sad to realize that this year is really starting to come to a close. I have formed some great relationship, ones that I hope to continue in the future, but I don’t know if I will ever see these people again.

It’s really sad to look at everything that I’ve done this year and realize that I haven’t done much for being here 6 months. I have just over 3 months left and then this amazing year is going to be over! I have one week left of school which means one last week with my friends. Today I went to my last Monday market. Tomorrow will be my last Tuesday Pad Thai. Last week Thursday was the last time I will ever wear the gym uniform. So much has happened in the last few days and so much more is going to happen in the next few. I can’t believe it’s all coming to a close! It feels like I just got here and like I’m finally finding my place and it all is ending.

Though I am happy and excited about summer and everything it’s going to bring, I’m sad for what I am losing. As much as I hate and complain about the uniform it’s going to be weird to not have to put it on every day. It’s going to be lonely at home with no friends to laugh with or to eat lunch with. I’m going to miss them teasing me or laughing at how I pronounce words. I’m going to miss Sai running up to me after the weekend and giving me a hug and kiss on the check. I’m going to miss Mo and Boom. I love spending time with them, talking with them, and just having fun and goofing around. I’m going to miss them speaking to me and Thai and me trying to reply and the thrill I get when they say Chok Dee (good job)! I’m going to miss the lunch lady’s smile because she knows exactly what I want without having to ask (I go there every day and get the same thing). I’m going to miss the English Corner filled with all the farang; I’m going to miss talking with all the teachers and laughing over stupid things I did or that happened to me. I’m going to miss Benchama and my life here!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Bye Bye Modeum 6 and Beginning Community Service

So yesterday was the farewell ceremony for Modeum 6 (that’s grade 12). They had a 2 hour assembly in the morning with a big ceremony for them. The rest of the day was spent giving them gifts, saying goodbye (even though they have exams for the next week), and using them as an excuse to ditch class. There was a group of Chinese people at the school so my class was in charge of showing them around so we didn’t have class. Lucas is in modeum 6 so he spent the day with his friends. He got decked out, I’ll have to post a pic at some point. I didn’t have much to do with it.

Well yesterday I was supposed to start my community service but Jason was sick and they didn’t think that I needed to go so they cancelled it. I did need to go but I guess what can I do. Jason was sick with a fever from many mosquito bites that made his whole foot swell to the point it wouldn’t even fit in a shoe after medicine for three days.

Today I actually did do community service. Peach’s mom is a nurse (a sex ed nurse as I found out from all the things in her office) and they were having an event at her hospital so we went to help out. We started by talking with some children about 9. Then they put us on serving duty so we went around with little desserts and drinks. We also helped to set up the food pyramid display. We did whatever they asked us to do and when they had nothing for us to do we sat and tried to figure out the Rubix cube that Lucas’s host brother bet him he couldn’t.

After the community service we went for lunch. We made it back in time for me to go to PE. Today was the first day of PE final. I didn’t know what I was doing so I just winged it. I don’t know why but I got a C. Boom said it’s no big deal because she did well and got a B. It was the beginning and she said it would get better so I shouldn’t think about it.

After school I mailed all the packages and post cards. All I have to say is that everyone I sent something to better love me because I spent my whole months money on shipping!

Well that’s all for now.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Beginning of Community Service -- FINALLY!!!

So today I started, well sort of, my community service. I'll start from the beginning of today though.

I woke up at 5 to get ready because I needed to be at school at 7:30 (or so I told my host family knowing that if I told them that early then I'd be there on time). I showered and did some stuff on my computer. I got ready and then ate breakfast (the leftovers from last nights dinner) and of course I ate alone because no one here eats breakfast. We left at like 7:20 ish (told you we are never on time, I'm in Thailand I've learned how things work). We made a few stops on the way and got to school at 8. I had time to tell Lucas we were NOT going to 7/11 talk to Martin, the kid from Alaska that is here with his family to avoid the Alaskan winter, and to get all my stuff taken care of. The lady came and picked us up then and we drove to pick up another student.

The 4 of us crammed in the back seat of the truck for the hour drive to the little school. The school is 5 years old and has less than 100 students (and the lady, I think she was the director, said most students don't show up). We walked around the school and talked to various classes. Most classes didn't have teachers so the students were just doing whatever they wanted.

After the tour of the one floor classroom we went to see the scenery. The school is built on a mangrove farm. There were monkeys and those weird things that look like giant tadpoles that like climb in the mud.

The lady then said that there wasn't anything left to do at the school so she was going to take us sightseeing. We first went to a different province to get drinks and to feed some fish. Then we drove to Cha Am to look at the beach. The they took us to Hua Hin to get Pizza Hut. It was great pizza, just like at home! We loved it and ate all of it (the large was the size of a small in America). Then they came and picked us up again (they went for traditional Thai somewhere).

We then went back to Petchaburi and went to this like shop area at the bottom of the mountain and I found Petchaburi postcards something I'd been looking for, and a Thailand keychain.

Then it was back to school. On arriving at school I looked through the large amount of shoes in front of the English Corner, and what do you know, my shoes were there. I ran inside with them, with my sandals still on, and hid them before anyone would know. I STOLE MY SHOES BACK I STOLE MY SHOES BACK!

After school I worked on the project for tomorrow. Jason and I are going to an elementary school to teach so we were preparing things (I love that he only has 2 weeks to do his community service because that means I'm actually getting mine done too). My host mom came and had to talk to some of the teachers because Mike is having a lot of problems in school.

We then went to dinner where I ate Pad Thai mi khai (Thai noodles no egg) and then we went and printed photos for me. I got 130 photos for around $14 (that's just over a penny each). And because I got some many they gave me a big one for free (8x10). Then we went and picked up some stuff for the store. There were two really cute little kids in the store and it was fun to watch them.

We then went and picked up Meow and Mike and headed home. I prepared the stuff to send to various places in the world and then cleaned my room a little. I had random stuff laying all over my room that I'm not going to use here so I put it all in boxes (yes boxES)! Just the few things laying around filled 2 1/2 boxes! I'm doomed! I've hardly gone anywhere or bought anything yet. I don't know what I'm going to do. I'm going to have to send more than half of my things with mom and dad because I will probably buy more after they leave because I will be traveling!

Well now I'm exhausted from a lack of sleep (I'm a teenager who likes to do everything at night and hates mornings) so I'm headed to bed. Night to all! Chan rak mak koon (lot of love to all)!