Returning to the City

Trip Start Jan 02, 2013
Trip End Jan 25, 2013

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Wednesday, January 16, 2013

I woke up this morning at 7 am. I was informed that my student who has been suffering with a sore throat, laryngitis, cough and congestion was feeling worse. This is the second year in a row. Last year I had a student who had an URI that turned into an ear infection while at the
village. It was decided that we should take her to see a doctor so we can get her medicine
and then we will return to BCNC for her to rest. Decha stayed behind with the other students and left with Aj Aoi, and my student. One of the Ajaans is married to a physician so she called him to make an appointment for my student to be seen. Unfortunately he was in the city attending a meeting but he did arrange for us to see another doctor. We arrived at the rural hospital at 8:30 am and were leaving the hospital by 9 am. She was seen in the Emergency Dept where they took her vital signs and history of current problem. She was escorted right to the doctor where she was examined. Medication was prescribed and distributed by the pharmacy. We were the only farangs (foreigner) present so everyone was watching us as we were escorted from one area to another.

Since we had not eaten breakfast prior to our departure, we stopped at a local bakery for breakfast. My student got soup and a milkshake, which felt good on her sore throat. I had an American breakfast that consisted of a fried egg, slice of ham, a link of sausage and coffee. As soon as we returned to BCNC the student and I showered and unpacked. Her medicine began to
kick in so she went to bed and I began to catch up on my journal.

I talked with Pi Jip today and she said Tantawan is doing very well. Khun Anan loves Tantawan b/c she is so funny and so happy, Tantawan is practicing her Thai with the entire family, including Khun Da (Pi Jip’s father). She began her internship on Monday. She arrived at the elementary
school and they assigned her to the 4th grade. They put her in the room with no teacher. She had a full classroom of students and no one spoke English. She tried to teach them but the students kept saying “Mai kow jai” which means “do not understand”. She felt rather frustrated. So, Monday night she worked on her teaching strategy for Tuesday. Apparently, Tuesday went much
better. She loves what she is doing. Although I hate to leave her behind, I am very happy for her.

I got a lot accomplished this afternoon. Caught up on my journaling, proof read some papers, worked on some materials for the students’presentation on disaster and Skyped with Rebekah for a while. I felt good about my productivity.

The group arrived back from the village around 6 pm.  Everyone had a good time and they were eager to update me on all of the stories. This morning they attended the village celebration for the oldest living monk. He was traveling from Bangkok and was making his way to several villages. The villagers spent Tuesday getting ready for his arrival. They were decorating, preparing the temple and setting up canopies to protect them from the sun’s rays. Since the celebration could take many hours they only stayed for a little while. They climbed the waterfall and had lunch
back at their home. In the afternoon we were to conduct an English class but because of the monk celebration the schedule was changed. Instead the students learned how to give a Thai massage and a foot massage. They had some awkward moments. The Thai therapist was demonstrating what to do and then expected the students to return the demonstration. Well, they had Jeremy paired with one of the female students. It was not a problem until the massage came to the hip and buttocks. Jeremy tried to get out of it but the therapist insisted that he follow her direction. Needless to say there was a lot of laughing. Then Jeremy’s Thai pants fell down and Aj Sejon had to come to his aid and assist him with securing his bottoms. Again, a lot of laughter erupted. The students participated in a new activity this year, a sauna. Jeremy and one of the students were dry roasted. Apparently, there are heated clay pots located under a table of herbs and banana leaves. You lay on top of the banana leaves and then you are covered with additional banana leaves. The treatment lasts for 30 minutes.turning from back to front. Jeremy reported it felt
good but it did get hot over time. Pictures were taken but I have not had time to see them yet.

We ate dinner at BCNC and called it an early evening. Oh by the way, Tantawan made an appearance tonight. She claims that she missed us but I think she missed Jeremy more. She had many stories to tell. The big one was that she cut her finger today using a pair of scissors. She was trying to punch a hole with them and instead sliced her finger. She cut it pretty good. She left a trail of blood and got the attention of several people in the school. She wanted mom to super glue the wound but I did not have any super glue with me. We washed it well and bandaged it for her. Pi Jip was going to call Jig Saw to see if she could look at it. She may need a couple of stitches. Good thing she got her tetanus shot before coming to Thailand. I am going to bed early
tonight. It has been a good week so far. 

Oh I forgot to mention that today was Teachers Day. The elementary schools were closed today so the students did not have to go to school. Teachers are highly regarded in Thailand. The Ajaans were saying that Thailand celebrates teachers but they do not celebrate nurses. They were surprised to find out that we do not have a Teachers Day but we do honor nurses during Nurses week. 

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Carolyn Kreamer on

Yikes! Poor Jeremy--lots of culture shock. Thai massage may be sensory bliss, but for a Westerner a bit of an education. :=)

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