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Published: January 10th 2018
Sawasdee kah, Last night I woke up at 4:30am and could not fall back asleep. Greg said that’s just jet lag and it should get better. I hope he’s right because I need to sleep so I can have energy. Today was a very busy and tiring day. I visited the Doi Sutep temple, Royal gardens, and the Red Cross Winter Festival. I tried a lot of new foods, and I enjoyed most of them! For breakfast I had fried garlic chicken and dumplings which were delicious. For lunch we ate out at a food court. Brielle and I split a noodle chicken stir fry and two fruit smoothies. Then all of our Thai buddies started bringing us different foods to try. I tried a fried banana, mango sticky rice, and shaved ice with gelatin pieces and coconut syrup on top. I’m probably forgetting some other foods I tried at lunch too. For dinner we had chicken tofu fried rice, papaya, and fried egg. At the Temple I tried Thai milk tea for the first time. It was very sweet, I could only drink half of my cup. I also bought a waffle with banana and chocolate sauce on it at the Temple. It was so good, I wanted to buy more, freeze them, and take them back to the states with me. While at the Royal Garden, one of the Thai students offered me a strawberry, which I grateful accepted. I had no idea that the strawberry had sugar and chili powder on it!
The first thing we visited was the temple, which was very high up on a mountain. I actually didn’t mind the curvy roads. I’m used to curvy roads back at home. The steps leading up to the temple was the hardest part of the trip, but we conquered them. It was interesting to see another religion, and how people practice it. I was getting weird vibes while on the temple grounds, so i was hesitant to interact too much. I don’t know if it was lack of translation abilities or what, but when i asked about the symbolism of different statues and such my buddies were unable explain it to me. I felt like they identified themselves as Buddhist, but didn’t know the whole religion very well. Watching people walk around the temple and carry out their prayers was an interesting experience. In christianity we don’t have to do anything special to receive God’s love and blessings. He answers our prayers whether we are laying in bed asking or if we’re sitting in class, silently speaking to him. In Buddhism, people have to go through rituals in order to have just their prayers heard. That realization saddened my heart. I tried to pray a few times while I was at the temple.
After the temple and lunch we headed to the Royal Gardens. My favorite exhibit was the Orchid garden. We got some great pictures, which i’m excited to post! After dinner our buddies took us to a festival which had lots of rides, games, food, and vendors. It was interesting to walk around and see everything, although i don’t like rides and we couldn’t eat the food. By the end of the evening I was starting to shut down. After a full day of interacting with my buddies and having Nu constantly touching my lower back while in public, I needed a little break. Touch is not my number one love language, so i think i had just reached my touching quota for the day and needed a little bit of space. Today I learned a valuable lesson on the versatility of tissues. You can use them to blow your nose, or clean your bottom if you have no toilet paper. I also took a really cold shower, which is my first and hopefully last cold shower in Thailand. Not to mention I learned how to say “green bean” in Thai! I was able to finally connect to the wifi and FaceTime my family, which was really nice. I’m excited to go to the hospital tomorrow and see where we will be working for the next week.
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