I have just returned from a splendid eleven day holiday in the Thailand. Whether or not I deserved it at the time is neither here nor there, I certainly feel like I deserved it now. Which is what’s important, right?
So holidays, there a pain in the tender spots for those among us who plan on being productive on them. I’m always making a mess of things by bringing too many books to read and too many aspirations for writing a few hundred thousand words, or something like that… It’s not that I don’t enjoy not doing anything, but holidays for some reason really don’t bring out the best in me in terms of being productive. Miserably cold winters are much more suitable. In fact, I believe that misery (not abject, but mild doses of the extreme first world problem variety) brings out the best in ones creativity.
I moved into a new apartment last month and to get home I have to drive my motorbike through a long and windy road with green palm trees, fancy houses and food stalls to get to my small apartment that I am totally in love with. It is a nice drive (except at dusk when the bugs fly into your eyes and mouth) and when I get home I greeted warmly by 20 beat up, dirty and stinky soi dogs that I am also quiet fond of. One in particular, we named Lil' Pup (cause you know she is a puppy but she is pretty hard from living on the streets) wiggles her whole body and jumps up to check if my bags have any food as she licks my hands and waits to get a little rub down. She does really love and trust us now and it has worked out, I feed her and love her (I should clean her) and then I can go up to my clean apartment with no dog hair and still feel the puppy love! Look at this face, who could not love it!
農曆新年 Year of the Dragon -2012!
Now looking back, I see that it was pretty sweet being a kid, no responsibilities, you can run around and play all the time - but wait, I teach 5 year old kids and their life isn't all peaches; they have so much pressure on them to learn many important things, everyone tells them what to do (including me!) and they are always getting into trouble, they can never just be kids and do what they want to do. Being a kid sucks sometime since children grow up so fast these days and start studying and working very hard, very young.
I remember being a kid and asking my mom on Mother's day, why there was no childrens day? It doesn't seem fair that Mothers and Father's get a day all for themselves, especially since, it seemed to me at that age, that they got whatever they wanted all the time! Her answer was always the same, "everyday is Children's Day." I however, disagreed.
Let's hop on a boat and head into town stopping at ancient temples along the way, with a colorful group of new friends and watch the spectacular fireworks over the Bangkok skylne from the best seat in the city. Sounds like a NYE that will not soon be forgotten.
finally over, we have been able to move back to Nonthaburi and school has finally resumed. I am teaching Kindergartners and am so far (mostly) loving it! My kids are at the perfect age where they don't cry or poop their pants anymore, but are still pretty cute (especially when I compare them to my older Korean children) and are learning so much everyday.
With the floods
For many people the Thai floods were just another story in the news, and for many here in Thailand they came and went quickly. Unfortunately for thousands, including me, they were a very grim reality that lasted for months, something we are still dealing with, long after the headlines are gone. I have been displaced from my new home for 2 months now but the waters have finally receded and we are able to go out an assess the damages. Driving through Nonthaburi, looking for a home, I wish I had brought a face mask to shield myself from the smells, dust and dirt that float through the air. It is apocalyptic out there and I am so lucky to have been able to escape. The devastation cannot be felt through pictures, it is something you have to witness and this being my first real natural disaster, it is like nothing I have ever seen in real life. Life goes on and we will all be getting back to our normal lives soon... but it is slow coming and a lot of work must be done.
check it out
!) about the differences between teaching English in South Korea (where I taught last year) and Thailand, where I am currently teaching. (Well kind of, the floods gave me two months of paid "vacation" right after I was hired but I finally get back to school on the 26th of this month, who ever thought you could tire of doing nothing? I am SOOO ready to get back to work!)
Check out the interview
that Jason did (and kindly edited, my writing has really been hurting with all this time off!) and decide whether teaching in Seoul or Bangkok is for you!
Recently did a guest interview with Jason from Life After Cubes (a great blog by two Americans currently in South Korea,
I have been a resident of Thailand for a little over two months now, floating around the southern islands while the floods have ravaged central Thailand and the capital. With the floods finally "under control" (but still devestating the northern suburbs where I live) we came back to Bangkok, where it all started, where it all happens, busy and smelly, full of contradictions living in harmony, the city of sin in the East.