Raise the Roof

I think Thailand is going to change the game ‘Never have I ever’ for me forever, specifically, Song Kran and it’s celebrations. As a broad overview, before Song Kran/arriving in Thailand, never have I ever:

-Led not one, not two, but three parades down the middle of my village

-Spent an entire day completely soaked and completely clothed

-……..for three days straight (not that they stopped celebrating, but I just couldn’t do it anymore)

-Had wet (and sometimes various colored) baby powder streaked across my face and body

-Actually liked the smell of baby powder (and am embarrassed to admit I use it now after showers)

-Been so excited for Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups that I cried (thanks Mom!)

-Had my feelings announced by the lead truck in one of my parades, it translated to something like this “The farang Erin is cold here people, let’s hurry it along to the wat!”

-Had an entourage of kids that guarded me from drunken Thai men wanting to put said powder on my face and body

-Been given roars of approval when performing the classic dance move, raise the roof

-Been able to skip lunch without a Thai person badgering me to eat (don’t worry, as soon as they found out that I forgot to eat, they pulled me out of the parade I was leading at the time to make me a quick omelet with rice, of course)

-Worn Hawaiian style flowered shirts to fit in with the crowd

I’m sure there’s more and will be added over time, but lots of going ons with the holiday and I’m looking forward to the next one. I hope to travel somewhere that time, hopefully to a nice beach town where I can be a somewhat more average 23-year-old and have farang fun with friends. It can be a bit of a strain always keeping myself in check so as to not do something culturally insensitive that might be totally normal for a person to do in America. For example, I really appreciated that people would help keep the drunkies away from me, but back home, if someone offered me whiskey during a crazy fun holiday that was essentially a countrywide water battle, I wouldn’t think twice of throwing it back and joining said drunks in dancing in the streets (although, as any time you’re the sober Sally amongst a crowd of drunk people, it was mildly entertaining to watch as they were groovin’). I felt bad for my friend Pi-Act, who is around my age and was escorting me around, instead of hanging out with her friends in the village, the other drunk and happy young people. This is the life I signed up for. Sometimes it’s rough, people laugh in my face everyday, say things about me that I don’t understand, while I’m standing there, my only food options are very ‘interesting’ kinds of things, and I’m told many times of day, how often I do things incorrectly.  The thing is, no one promised that it would be easy, they just said that it would be worth it. Thus far, this has been the toughest job that I really am loving.

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