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Sunday, July 31, 2011

I'm Pretty Sure Fei-Fei Lives in a Pool Hall

Time is running out! This summer has flown by so quickly, I can hardly believe that we have less then two weeks left with the kids. The past couple of weeks Laura and I have taken up bikeriding. It's amazing, we can pick any direction and within ten or fifteen minutes of riding we're out of the city. We have ridden through so many different landscapes that are all beautiful in their own way. My favorite ones though, are the ones that feel like a jungle. Sometimes we will be on a little road completely surrounded and covered with huge trees and/or grasses and feel like a tiger could jump out at us. Alas, no more tigers. We do however see lizards and snakes. We also saw a komodo dragon once, it was the size of a crocodile, freaked us out a little bit just hanging out on the lawn of some gated place we decided to bike into. I thought we might be on a wildlife preserve after that. Oh, and one time we were biking through these trees on some rural road out in the country and I told Laura that I hadn't seen any reptiles that day. She looked at me and told me there was a giant spider on my boob and there was. I screamed and hit it off and almost fell off my bike. Very exciting.

Me by the Garden Home

Me by a giant gold Buddhist head

Same place with the Buddhist head, found this temple on our bikes.

Ancient Phichit Ruins

Phichit Crocodile, they have meetings in there.

Alisha by a River (in case you couldn't tell)

Last week we started going to the kids houses to do parent teacher conferences. We each were supposed to go "conference" with three kids + families but it hasn't exactly worked out that way. On Monday I went to Name's house with Sarah and Tang and we had a really yummy dinner while Tange talked to her parents in Thai and she hid in another room. Alisha was supposed to visit Nest and Fei-Fei on Thursday and Friday but both families wanted all of the teachers to go so I went to those too. Nest lives in a house that is in the middle of a whole bunch of rice paddies very far away. His family was very nice and made us lots of good food and I just kept eating it. Apparently I really like flowers. When we went to see Fei-Fei we were led into a pool hall. That is where we ate dinner. For all I know he lives in that pool hall. From what Tang has told us he comes from a very powerful family that is one of the oldest in Phichit. They fed us shark fin soup and many other delicious treats. I think I might miss having Thai food every day; I really like rice now.

Ink and Mew being Pirates!

Nam-Nan Counting Tokens

Mew :)

Name Singing Little Green Frog

Phuvit being the wolf pretending to be the grandma in Little Red Riding Hood

Pordee being the woodcutter

Alisha and Prea


Saturday we went to Burma with Tarn and Jeab, which is actually no longer Burma but Myanmar. We had to go because or visas were going to expire today (small oversight) so if we hadn't left the country and got an extra 15 days we would have had to pay 500 baht for every day that we stayed over our original 90. Luckily we didn't have to pay for the trip since it was not our fault. We left the house at eleven on Friday night drove eight hours and got to the gates at six in the morning. We crossed over, they thought I was Laura and had to whiteout my temporary visa and write in my actual name. We spent the morning shopping. Everything there was brand name (I dunno if it was real or not) and very cheap. We, unfortunately were sick of shopping and didn't get that much. Alisha did, however, buy a bright purple ukulele and I bought a whole bunch of blue bracelets and a souvenir for my daddy.
We then drove home from about two to ten stopping to see a shiny white palace/temple thing that had hell at the bottom and heaven at the top. Inside was a mural of hell (at the entrance) and all the people going to heaven on dragon leaves. Hell was graced by the likes of Spiderman, Captain Jack Sparrow, Ben Ten, Avatars, Darth Vader, a Transformer, Superman, Batman, some Hard Core Lovers, and of course Michael Jackson. It was kind of a weird temple. It was gorgeous till you got close enough to see what exactly was going on. We also stopped at a lake. It was gorgeous but we have no idea where it was or what it was called.

Alisha slept on the floor of the van all the way to Burma

In between Burma and Thailand which is actually called Myanmar.

Hell outside of the temple

On the way up to Heaven

Alisha just got out of Hell. I'm on my way to Heaven.

The Lake of Shining Waters

Today we went to church bright and early. I am going to miss our ward a lot. They take such good care of us. I got several hugs today from people just saying hi and from people we had to say goodbye too. Next week will be really difficult cause it will be our last Sunday in Thailand. The one after that will be spent in Cambodia. I'm almost homesick for here already.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Harry Freakin Potter

So I have a confession. I am now as reluctant to blog as Alisha is. I'm sorry I don't know how it happened but it did. So I will try and catch you up quickly because I imagine no one cares what we are doing more then we do and if I get bored typing this then the reader will probably get bored reading it. Stands to reason anyway.
So last weekend we went to Bangkok primarily to see Harry Potter in English, and let me tell you it was so worth it. We dressed up and everyone laughed at us and we cried through the movie. Well I cried, Alisha sort of frowned maybe...I dunno. Anyway it was amazing so we saw it again in Thai when we got home. But that is getting a little bit ahead of the story. After our long train ride, which was actually just my long train ride because Alisha went 12 hours before in the middle of the day in a car and got pizza hut for dinner. I had dry chicken... I'm sorry this isn't coherent but the fact of the matter is that we were separated for over 24 hours in which I taught, ate nasty chicken, and rode a train all night. Alisha drove in a car and went shopping and had American Food and went to bed before two. Not that I am complaining I had fun I'm just stating the differences. Anywho, we saw Harry Potter at the mall the day I got there, cried, then went shopping. Shopping was interesting because it was all outdoors and we were lost in the pet section for a long time. But I did find some ties and some elephants...but there are elephants everywhere so that wasn't as thrilling as it once was. Oh but PS we went to like 5 malls that day and by the time we made it back to the house we were exhausted. Also Tang let us stay at her house so we didn't have to pay for a hotel.
Next day..Phew..we went to Pattaya which was a dirty tourist beach in more ways then one. Alisha, Sarah, and I sat in a Starbucks eating chocolate pastries and counted old white men who were with beautiful, young, Thai girls. Jenna and Laura laid out on the trash covered beach. It was just a day trip and nothing terribly exciting happened. We decided though that it is a place for stupid tourists because everything is way overpriced. Wouldn't have known that three months ago....
Sunday we went to the only English speaking branch in Thailand and understood church. Giant blessing. I am never going to under-appreciate church again. Then we went home. On a train. And ate good Thai food. Yum.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Go Bananas!

Today Whitney and I went to the park to exercise. I am sore, so I only walked a few laps, while Whitney ran several. Because I only planned to walk, I was wearing a nice shirt and my khaki capris. After we finished, we casually strolled on back to the house. Like usual, I was purposefully oblivious to my surroundings (I don't like to notice when people are staring at me. It makes me feel super awkward). We then come to a man who had just crossed the street and was getting into his car. We both were enraptured with our conversation and meant to just keep walking past, until the man stood in our path and held out a bunch of bananas (16 of them to be precise). We sort of just stared at him, but he very insistently handed the bananas to me. I just looked at them and then at him, and then he got into his car to drive away. We then proceeded home, me now carrying lots of bananas. I counted three different groups of people (mostly guys) that said "hello" to us and waved. We got home and walked into the doctor's clinic. I'm sure we confused the lot of them, because here I was wearing normal clothes and carrying lots of bananas, while Whit was drenched in sweat wearing her stained baggy shirt. They probably thought: well, at least Whitney is healthy. What's wrong with Alisha that she has to go out and buy herself 16 bananas? Once explained, our Thai family thought that the story was hilarious.

Man, what's it going to be like to go home and not be such a celebrity anymore? We get people staring at us, waving at us, vainly trying to speak with us in Thai, smiling at us, AND our very presence inspires the giving of a delicious fruit. How could it get any better than that?

Monday, July 11, 2011

The Fourth of July is just the fourth of July in Thailand

I bet you think it's funny that most of our posts are either about vacations or Holidays, I do. the reason for this is that the rest of our time here is pretty laid back and I never finish any of the hum-drum posts I start. I may get back to them. One is about teaching the kids drama and another is about how Thai people sctter when you pull out a phone in a lightening storm. I would think it is just as dangerous in my pocket as it is in my hand but maybe I'm missing something. Anyway this post is about the July 4th.
There were no fireworks (except the ones we watched on youtube), no picnic blankets, and no fear that a teenage boy was going to hit someones car with a bottle rocket but we had a barbeque. This was fantastic on account of I have grown rather attached to meat that isn't boiled or fried. George, the gardner, pulled this never used grill out of the Garden House shed and Jenna cooked us chicken, not quite a cheeseburger but still very good. We also had pork and fish (grilled). The rest of the meal consisted of bagels, cream cheese, homemade chocolate chip cookies, sticky rice, coconut cake, coke, steamed carrots, and hashbrowns. I just want you to picture the randomness of this meal. But it was so delicious. Food is kind of a novelty here especially American food thts why we need to talk about it so much.
(Our normal everyday food consists of rice, bamboo, thai omletts, veg (veg is any vegetable chopped up and fried with meat), chinese sausage, and soup. )
Oh and speaking of novelties the other day we were having our awesome weekend night eating soft serve ice cream at KFC and three white guys walked in. It was so awkward the 8 of us just stared at each other. I'm basically a local because I now stare at white people too.
If I'm truley honest on this blog we have been mostly lame for the last two/three weeks. We ride bikes (if the tires work), we have nice long naps, we go running if it isn't to hot, we hang out at Tesco on weekends, we have dance parties on the roof, we do Thai areobics, eat soft serve ice cream, shop for hammocks, and we watch movies. Luckily this weekend we have a little action planned because we are going to Bangkok so that we can see Harry Potter in English. We are also going to a beach and some famous market. So eventually there will be an exciting post up yay!

Sunday, July 3, 2011


For those of you who don't know this, we have decided to celebrate all of the major holidays during our summer here in Thailand. We had a most splendid time celebrating Halloween and Thanksgiving was only a few weeks afterward.

Thanksgiving was held on a Saturday, so we didn't have classes that day. We woke up late in the morning and Sarah, Laura, and I (Alisha) went with Tang to the market. We had never walked through Phitchit's fresh market before, and it was pretty intense. Fruit, vegetables, meat, jewelry, and other random things adorned the tables, ready for purchasing. We walked past the pig heads and animal organs in buckets and bought fresh vegetables for our upcoming meal. For dinner it would be the five of us plus the five in Tang's family, so we needed to buy a lot of food.

After we got all of the ingredients we needed (which took another trip to Tesco and 711) everyone received their own assignments in preparing our meal. I was somehow selected to be in charge of the meat. We were unable to find a turkey. However, we did buy a couple of small chickens. I now have a new appreciation for boneless, skinless chicken breasts that can be kept in the freezer. I pulled the smelly chickens out of their bags and busily started hacking away at them. Keep in mind that I had never actually prepared meat for a meal before, (besides frying hamburger or something) let alone taken the skin off and de-boned a chicken. It took awhile, but I finally got the chicken looking like chicken you would buy in America.

Whitney had the task of making stuffing and sauteing things. Jenna made the gravy, Laura made the mashed potatoes, and Sarah made rolls and chocolate pies. With all of our combined efforts, the meal was quite a success. Poor Whitney had a migraine that day, but she's a tough cookie and remained positive the whole day.

Whitney in her sunglasses due to the migraine

Let's not forget to mention that we did this all using a tiny little oven (they don't believe in ovens here. They fry and boil everything here). Everything tasted heavenly. Tang and her family also enjoyed the meal. Mom even told Sarah that she should open up a bakery here. Before we ate, we had everyone say something that they are grateful for. Thanksgiving was truly a success.

Our tiny oven that baked the chicken, rolls, stuffing, and pie crusts

Sarah and Laura jumped onto the same chair after seeing a lizard run out of the cupboard

The fam