One of the best weekends...

Trip Start Jul 31, 2008
Trip End Jul 31, 2010

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Sunday, March 8, 2009

Finally, a week that flew by!  I'm not sure what was different this week, but it seemed to go by quickly.  Monday, I had art class, which I posted the picture in the last blog, but I'll probably put it in this one is the "House on the Hill."
The rest of the week at school was pretty uneventful.  I did submit a proposal to be a "New Teacher Coordinator."  I want to earn some money for the new teacher handbook I did and try to set up new teachers with the teacher they are replacing, as well as a contact that will still be here when they arrive.  Management has a meeting this Tuesday and will make a decision then- the worse they can say is no right?
I went to our weekly volleyball this week.  It was a lot of fun.  There were 20 people so we played one net of 6 on 6 and the other net of 4 on 4.  The 6 on 6 game was all the guys, Debra and myself- go figure I'd be playing ball with the boys.  It was great though.  I actually felt like I was able to work on my game and step it up a notch.
We are having a door decorating competition for Reading Month.  The theme is St. Patrick's.  We started working on our door on Friday.  My students came up with all the ideas and created everything.  The only thing I did was tape the background to the door.  I'm so proud of their creativity.  The pictures I have are just a taste of what they have done.  I'll be sure to take a final picture when we are done.
Friday afternoon, Sarah and I headed into town to meet Amber and Harrison.  We jumped on a mini van and headed down to Hua Hin.  We spent the night in Hua Hin and enjoyed a nice evening there.
Saturday morning, we rented motos- my first time driving one and headed down to Sam Roi Yot, a National Park.  There are caves, a viewpoint, and mangroves as part of the park.  We decided on our way in that we would stop and some of the caves.  We got to where we could park for the first cave.  We had the option of hiking 1 km or taking a boat to the other side.  We opted to walk and ended up on a beautiful beach.   We got some lunch and then walked the 430km in to a huge cave.  There were two places where the ceiling of the caves had collapsed, which provided for some amazing pictures with the sun reflecting.  It was quite a hike up, but well worth it.
We decided that instead of going to other places in the park, we would just camp on this beach.  Amber and Harrison had a tent, but Sarah and I were able to rent one for very cheap.  It was an amazing location.  There were tons of shells and sand dollars washed up on the beach.  There were very few people there and even fewer foreigners.  That doesn't happen very often, but sometimes it is really nice.  We hung out on the beach for a while and hung out at the restaurant for dinner and just enjoying each other's company.  It was extremely quiet, except for the cicadas but those you just get used too.
Sunday morning we were up early and hiked our way out to the motorbikes.  We drove to another cave.  This one was a little easier of a hike, but we needed lights for inside.  It had a ladder to climb down into the cave and then we could explore on our own.  There were arrows giving us a little direction to get in and out.  This cave was spectacular!  It had great crystals forming and the walls sparkled with the lights.  We even saw a bunch of bats hanging from the ceiling.  It was awesome.  After enjoying that cave, we headed to the mangroves.  There were monkeys on the side of the road (similar to the ones we saw in Malaysia) and they followed us for a little bit.  We walked around the mangroves for a little bit, but it was getting super hot so we didn't stay long.  Once done there, we headed back to Hua Hin.  It was extremely hot, and even though I slathered myself in sunscreen, I still burned.  Now I'm slathering myself in aloe vera!  It's so frustrating when I try so hard not to get burnt and still do.  Oh well.  Next time I'll just try to put it on more often or cover up more. (It is hard to cover up because I'm constantly sweating.)
We stopped for gelato and returned our bikes, and then headed to the mini vans.  We were in the van waiting for it to fill up and we saw Jared and Kelly.  We knew they were down in that area too, but they did on their own.  It was great to share the ride back and swap stories.  This weekend definitely moves up to the top three in favorite weekends and favorite places to go.  I felt like we did a lot but also allowed ourselves to relax too.  It is great to know there is such a secluded and beautiful place only a few hours outside of Bangkok, and it is super reasonable as far as expenses go.  We definitely plan to go back to see the other cave and the viewpoint we didn't get to this time. 
Only 3 more full weeks of school until parent conferences and a long weekend...woo hoo!  (But it should be a fun few weeks before spring break...I've got a lot of things up my sleeves for the kids) :-D

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