It’s already been almost a week since I left home and I can honestly tell you that I am still in shock that I am here. For many, you have this idea that I am In Thailand, soaking up the sun, probably laying on a nice beach somewhere, white sand between my toes and maybe, just maybe a cold drink in my hand. Nope, not even close. Instead, I am literally dying of heat, sweating 100% of the time (and I mean dripping sweat), not using an air conditioner at night in order to save money, having an extremely hard time adjusting to the food here and constantly feel like there are so many unknowns about this trip that I am on. However, although daunting, something about it is making me feel more humbled as a person and I am loving that. Visiting a country is completely different when you are not visiting as a tourist! So many people have these ideas of how amazing it would be to live in another country but do not realize how complicated it is to fully immerse yourself in that culture and live like a local. I am still experiencing some of the luxuries as a tourist however in a little over three weeks that will change dramatically. In September I could be moving to a place where I may be one of only a few English speaking people in my town (lmao I’m terrified)! The mix of emotions that I have been experiencing this week are surreal.
Most of you know that I have come to Thailand to teach English as a second language. As a result, I am taking a course that lasts a month and will certify me to teach English within Thailand and just about anywhere else. I just moved to a “resort” town called Hua Hin, approximately 3 hours south of Bangkok and will be living here for the duration of that month. Everyday I have to be at school around 7:45 am and generally have class all day until 4:00 pm with a little over 20 people that are pretty awesome. Our apartment is a far walk from school so everyday we have to take a Songthaew. This thing is hilarious. It’s a little passenger vehicle that is basically a truck that people can hop on and off of like a bus. They’re super cheap so they are very desirable to use in order to get around town.
So far my classes have consisted of Thai Language, Thai Culture, a Teacher Workshop and a class about our teaching placement once we finish the course. This week we also got to go on a couple of field trips and see some pretty cool things! Yesterday we got the opportunity to travel to a little rural area and visit a Pineapple farm. The pineapples here were amazing (so sweet and refreshing in this insane heat!!!)! Any pineapples that aren’t considered “good enough” for human consumption are saved and given away as a donation to the Hutsadin Elephant Sanctuary. After the pineapple farm this elephant sanctuary was our next little adventure. We all donated a little bit of money in order to take a few large bags with us to feed the elephants. This was an awesome experience. The elephants here are adorable! One in particular named Songkran was the cutest little thing I’ve even seen. This little baby Elephant is only 7 years old and can paint flowers and even play soccer (yes I just said an elephant could paint)! I’ve never seen anything like it in my life lol! It was super cute.
Today, we got to visit a dog rescue here in Hua Hin called Rescue paws and The Khao Tao Temple. Rescue Paws is amazing. All over Thailand there is a high population of stray dogs but Hua Hin in particular has a massive population of them. So, Rescue Paws was created by some amazing dog lovers who provide a place to take in these stray dogs and provide care for them in to ensure they live a better and healthier life. The goal is to have all of these dogs spayed and neutered to decrease the amount of homeless dogs in the town. Anyways, this place was great and even has some of the dogs up for adoption. They had mentioned that if we are interested we can adopt one and bring it back home with us. Not going to lie, I considered it a few times lmao. The dogs even have pretty sweet access to the beach which is clearly used to help aid their rehabilitation as well. After Rescue Paws we went to Khao Tao Temple. This temple was so serene. Located on a mountain, surrounded by trees and the ocean. We stayed there for a little while, hiked up the mountain to see the huge Buddha, learned a little bit about meditation, Buddhist monks and then headed back home. It has been crazy rainy all day so my roommate and our other friends decided to call it an early night and relax.
So here I am, inside my hot and sticky room, drinking warm beer and contemplating whether or not I should eat my instant noodles bought from a convenience store. Have a good night everyone- Or I guess good morning/afternoon for the most of you lol.