Blogs from Takua Pa, South-West Thailand, Thailand, Asia


Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Takua Pa April 14th 2008

So we are half way through our vacation within a vacation. I do have to warn you that if you are jealous of what you have read in the past few months...stop here. Right now it is a beautiful monday afternoon in southern Thailand...later today we are flying to Bangkok! We had three CRAZY days here in Phuket. The first day we hung out at the beach, walked around, and just relaxed. We went fishing that night, so we didn't want to do anything crazy during the day. Our fishing trip was a blast. We went with an Australian couple.and between the four of us...we caught one fish. I'd love to say I caught it, but the one and a half foot baracuda that jake snagged isn't worth it. It was just relaxing to sit out ... read more
First night in Patong Beach
Kids and their games!
Fisrt night...Patong Beach

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Takua Pa February 27th 2008

Today was full of excitement. After such a long sail day yesterday, justin and i just passed out and slept for 11 hours straight so after breakfast and trying to wake up with the help of strong coffee, we were on our way to the other side of the island. We were introduced to our ATV rides and after a short briefing... we were on our way through the jungles, in the rivers, through the villages, through the latex trees and arrived at a beautiful waterfall where we stopped for a much needed swim and snack. I got scared many times and thought for sure I would fall over and roll over with the ATV or just fall of the road as there was no security side walls what so ever. When we went through the ... read more
River ATV
ATV river ride
Waterfall swim!

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Takua Pa December 18th 2007

I would like to introduce you to three new children to our home. They arrived Saturday and Sunday. The children are siblings in care and true to the wisdom of social welfare systems all over the globe, seperated the children into three provinces. They were sent to Pattani, Surat Thani and Nikon Si Thammarat social welfare homes. These homes are similar to orphanages with over 100 children in residence. In late August the mother approached Khun Rotjana and begged her to bring her children together. After much negotiations, discussions and plenty of fight from Khun Rotjana, the government allowed the children to come back together and make Baan Tharn Namchai their home permanently. The youngest of the children is nearby with a nanny as she is only 11 months old. Her three siblings have come to ... read more
Bang Pon

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Takua Pa December 14th 2007

Mom drops me off at school on the motorcycle. She gives me a twenty baht and a ten baht for me to buy my lunch. I go into my class and put the bag on my chair…your have to your bag facing outside because it’s bad luck if you don’t. After that we go line up and sing the Kings anthem and pray to the Buddha at the school. A few other songs to but I can’t remember. Then we march out in our lines and go into our class and start our day. Our teacher comes in and we say, “Sawadee Khun Khru”. It sounds cool when we all say it together. The teacher gives us a math page and we do the math. I’ve got every questions right and had 20/20 on my test ... read more
Sports day uniform

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Takua Pa December 11th 2007

Sawadee Kha! Happy Holidays from Baan Tharn Namchai! I am working at an orphanage in the south of Thailand that supports children and families devastated by the Tsunami of 2004. Although we are coming upon the third anniversary of the disaster, we need your help. The emergency funds and humanitarian aid that flooded our area in the first year after the disaster is finished, but our children are still here and still need a means to attend school and have a home. For the past two years, our staff and members of the community have worked hard to establish and maintain the children’s home here at the centre in Phru Teow village. Many improvements have been made this year including additions to the washing and kitchen area, mattresses for the 20 new children that have come ... read more

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Takua Pa December 8th 2007

Len Lom…Play with the wind Weow and Wind In the past few days I have seen the stands of kite sellers crop up along the highway, flashing thier bright wares and hollering out discounts to beat out their rivals. I’m not a big fan of activities that encourage me to run…I left that with my gymnastics past, but I bought one anyway… Our kite or weow (sounds like “wow” with a southern drawl) caused quite the stir. For example it’s day three and Miles is outside with two neighborhood kids trying to tie it to a bicycle fender to fly around the village on the bike… The wind has picked up in the cool season and it’s the perfect time for kite flying. Kites are said to have become popular during the Sukhothai period in Thailand ... read more
Take off!
Tum gets ready to sail his kite

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Takua Pa December 5th 2007

A Day for a King-On the 80th birthday of Thailand's Monarch A year ago I stood on the same spot surrounded by the same kids, but they all look so much older now. The girls are all growing up, the boys becoming refined gentlemen. The King’s birthday has always been a celebration close to the hearts of Thai’s and to myself in an odd way….it was really the event that first allowed Malie and Buud to feel as though they were part of the group. Malie and this year, Buud were invited to walk in places of honor with the kids this year. As we walked through the market to our meeting points, the sight of two farang kids (well Miles at least…Malie looks more Thai every day if she isn’t looking directly at you with ... read more this year
The group who led the parade...I am so proud!!
Fireworks too!

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Takua Pa November 29th 2007

This evening I flew solo with the kids. It was a wonderful opportunity for me to do two things I love. Teach, and work with words. Because a good chunk of my background is in journalism and I found a real sense of security when I surround myself with words, I was content to be left with teaching this portion of the project on my own. Pee Kwang was unable to join me because of other orphanage work. After school, a few of the kids who completed their homework early, signed out the cameras and disappeared for a couple of hours. Some amazing photography came out of this session. The lighting was gorgeous in the early evening. I have to admit I was blown away by a few of the pictures. After dinner the kids gathered ... read more
Amazing words
Thai dictionary

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Takua Pa November 28th 2007

Day two was a fabulous success…I am so tempted to leak a few images! Some of the children are showing an incredible talent as photographers and the enthusiasm is amazing. The all wanted to sign out cameras for the entire next day to take to school. Not a good idea, but I did allow one camera to go. As they all attend the same school, hopefully we’ll have some feeling of inclusion. After school the kids are allowed to select five photographs each, one of which will be printed and used for tonight’s writing session. I am flying solo tonight in the leadership department as Staci is staying in Khao Lak for this evening. It’s a tiring trip going back and forth each night. The goals for tonight are to “put words with images”. We are ... read more
Staci (with Kwang's translation) describing photography techniques using examples from her book
At the whiteboard....

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Takua Pa November 26th 2007

I sat at the stop light this morning on my motocyc…and I realized something. My daughter is a brave kid. On her first day of school in a different country and in a different language, she stood on stage in front of more than 1000 students and introduced herself. Today was her first real full day of school. I drove her and Jhang on the motocyc at 7:30 to the school, Ban Yan Yao School which serves Kindergarten through Mayatom Three (grade 9). It is the biggest school in Takua Pa. Marrin dressed in her Prayatom Cee (elementary four) uniform, but clearly not Thai, was inundated by a hundred students as we sat waiting for the morning call to assembly. The kids just stared. Marrin was okay at first but the crowd kept pressing closer…there is ... read more
Malie's school uniform
...with friends
...heading to class...

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