Published: January 20th 2013January 20th 2013
This is the best noodle soup found in Thailand (I will make that statement yes). It costs $1....
The title of this blog is a bit misleading, as I have actually been here officially for 23 days. But, putting that aside, one of my fellow study abroaders, Julia, told me that it is supposed to take 21 days to form a habit, so from that I decided to discuss the habits I have formed over the last 21 (23) days.
1. Never throw toliet paper into the toliet bowl. While most things in Thailand are just as advanced as any where else, the septic systems here are not. There is really never a situation where it is acceptable to disregard the trash can next to every toliet, and instead throw your toliet paper into the bowl.
2. Eating rice or noodles with every single meal. I like to pretend that I am constantly eating the day before a big sporting event, so I feel that it is somewhat excusable for me to carbo load at every meal of the day.
3. Putting on sun screen. This habit is slow to form, but after I fried myself the other day on a simple walk through the park, it seems as I am learning.
4. Try *every
This strange Thai dessert is one of those things I saw and just bought because how else could I figure out what that yellow spaghetti stuff was..
food. Its often the strangest looking street foods that catch our eyes, but we often ignore it because we are afraid. One of my favorite treats from Thailand are these little baked custard yummies (no other words to describe this). See picture!! They sometimes have onion, chives, maybe meat, or just plain...they are the best, but they aren't something you would naturally pick up. Another one of my favorites is Coconut ice cream with sticky rice, corn, sweat and condensed milk, and peanuts!! A little weird you think, thats where you're wrong...this is the best combination you'll ever try. Life is good here (please give me a few months to work off the extra pounds when I get home). Also, it is fun to try the scorpion and grasshoppers...discusting as they look (and taste) its at leaset a fun story. Don't only eat Phad Thai (even though its amazing and you could and never feel bad.)
*Disclaimer!! Some foods should actually be avoided to prevent food poisioning. Specifically those that look like they could possibly have been sitting out all day. I have been fortunate enough to not to get sick from food yet.
5. Tell everyone you're
This is a Buddha that is pretty close to my dorm. It is the walk I went on and learned to always wear sunscreen.
from Mahidol. This is kind of a joke because everyone always tells us to bring our I.D.'s everywhere because Mahidol is very well respected in Thailand and apparently the picture I.D. has helped solve some farang (a word that means foreigner in Thai) misteps. Jokes aside, today we went to the Grand Palace and the Reclining Buddha (Wat Po) in our uniforms and with our I.D.'s and we got in for free!!! We saved 600 Baht...which is only $20 but can get us soooooo much here in Thailand.
6. You never have to pay over 60 Baht for a delicious Thai meal. We actually rarely pay more than 45 Baht (about $1.25), but I figured I would give myself some wiggle room. Of course you can definitely spend more and you will be rewarded, but honestly, some of my absolute favorite meals cost $1. This is a point where I have to say I am unsure how my transition back to the U.S. will go due to the outrageous difference in cost of living between here and there. It is pretty unreal what you can get for $1 here... While I did have some culture shock coming here, I
think the reassimilation into American society will be much harder.
7. As an American, you are often unliked. This is less so true with Thai, who would not really ever tell you they didn't like you even if they didn't, but it is more true of the other farang traveling around Thailand. Often times this is something that frustrates me because I see myself as an indivdual who is not strictly a product of their nation, but I am working on my Mai Pen Rai attitude toward that as well. Bringing me to my next point....
8. Mai Pen Rai! One of the best things about Thailand (besides the coconut ice cream...E, you're gonna be so happy). This is more of a feeling and state of being in Thailand. The goal is to never really be rushed or stressed out and that whatever happens is going to happen and to be at peace with it. This takes credit for the minimal public display of emotion (especially anger) here.
9. Going to school twice a week. There is really no other words needed. Full weeks are going to be rough again.
10. Having minimal laws except for
Lese Majeste laws. Truly, there are very few strict rules in Thailand. Mom don't freak out. It doesn't mean that people aren't respectful or careful, but they truly live by their own rules that make their lives work the smoothest. Four lane highways turn into eight lanes when Bangkok's famous traffic jams hit, there is no such thing as the FDA, cats and dogs out number most everything, pharmacists also prescribe, taxi cabs go unmetered (don't ever take these cabs), taxi cabs take 8 people in one cab (do take these cabs), mini vans don't drop you where you think they will, and children stay up all night selling roses to drunk farang.
Okay, there is so much more I could write, but it's been fun. I've uploaded some pictures to help you all see what I'm seeing.
There are more photos below