Blog No 8 Back to the Big Noisy city of Bangkok

13 01 2009

Good Morning . Dear World

It is seven  am. I fill my travelling mug with hot water and scamper across the street to squat against the wall of the temple compound and sip it in the sunlight that is just lifting the cold night mist that has everyone shivering and clutching themselves. Aah! the blessings of sunlight. And then I have a long sonorous fart. It is lovely, instead of the clutching fear, to be re-establishing a relationship of trust with my sphincter after the five days of suspicion and dysentery . Some of the finest pleasures of live are the simplest aren’t they! This is my last day in this little border town. I have enjoyed it. It is very simple and undeveloped and I don’t think I have seen a dozen Westeners in a week. But the people are friendly, the market is pleasant and colourful and the weather fine. Now as I drink my hot water ( coffee abandoned during the purge) ( latest update! cancel that!)the motor bikes purr past , the riders wearing balaclavas , the women swathed in shawls , the men in kapok jackets, the kids clinging to their backs like lice. A woman sings in her back yard—so nice. Remember when men and women sang and a song was something to be taught to others and freely shared and not copyrighted and sold on discs and propagated by blathering radio DJs interspersed with motor car advertisements? A rooster calls, ten times , meticulously spaced, in case we hadn’t heard it the first time. A  T.V. turns on. I haven’t heard or seen the news in a week and have lost touch of how many Palestinians have been murdered this week. How nice. In the Hieroglyphs of the Pharoh Amenhotep 111 there are accounts of the Hittites and Palestinians fighting each other. That land has demons. Today I will buy a ticket on the best bus remembering my lesson to travel comfortably otherwise I have to spend a day sleeping off the rigours of travel. Now its time for breakfast. More later.

 

Well, after breakfast I went with the man whose home I have been sharing. He is a member of what he calls an independent church. There are about 100 members. They are building a new little church for themselves. In the meantime they are spending a lot of time helping Karen and Mon refugees who have fled the military government of Burma which has been persecuting the Karen and Mon people and taking away their traditional lands leaving them helpless with their families. The organization has set up a little school to try to give the kids some education and give the families some shelter. The photos up above were taken by me this morning. It is quite a lovely scene, but they obviously need help in every imaginable way. Some of the ways that they could be helped are- obviously- money, but, if you are contemplating travelling to Thailand and want a quiet little town with clean air and a nice lake where you can canoe and kayak etc., and could put in some time teaching the kids English, that would be most welcome. Also,if you are an experienced traveller and lightly loaded a suitcase of kids clothes from your local Sally Anne or church thrift store would also be most welcome. The man Bawgee is a family man with a pleasant wife ( both speak good english and are themselves Burmese) and three little girls. A good soul. He takes his four-wheel pickup up periodically and scours the borders in the mountains looking for refugees needing help. I am going to collect some SS for them. If you want to send them some $$ you can send through me or I can give you his name and bank account which he has given me. This scene is genuine. It is not a scam. I have hung around the school and watched it in operation. I think that volunteering to teach would be a very good way to integrate the culture at a deeper level than simply touring around looking for ‘experiences’ like staring at long-necked women ( how degrading and insensitive can you get?)  or patting drugged tigers. So anyway, I’m putting it out there for you in case any of you want to help the world be a better place and one good thing is that if you were sending $$ it would all arrive  at the target destination. The conduit doesn’t leak as it does for most charity organizations. Tomorrow I leave this little town which I have come to enjoy very much, its laid back people, easy acceptance of strangers, clean air and sunny warm days and cool misty nights. Bring a little mosquito net if you are coming here, there IS some malaria here

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Volu and kidsnteer teacher

 

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One of the living quarters                       Little cuties the paste marking is typically Burmese

 

 

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More kids                                               Living quarters

 

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Another volunteer teacher                     And more peanut people

So, dear world, I’m going to close and pack my things now after my evening meal in the market and then, tomorrow, away on the big bus to Bangkok. I m still wondering if there is anyone out there. This blogging thing is a little lonely at the moment. so long for now.  P.s and here;s a photo of the little church they’re building. I was impressed by the walls which were made from hand=made brick’s using 6 parts earth and i part cement. They have a big old hand  press at the back which makes one brick at a time—200  a day.I’m impressed!By the way Bawgee tld me another way they need help is teaching them how to grow crops of veggies /rice etc so if your’e a gardener they could use your expertise on teir growing land a little way from here. Love and peace to you LaurieCIMG1283 The church

 

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4 responses

13 01 2009
Benbear

Welcome back to Grungtep

http://thethairun.blogspot.com/

Ben

14 01 2009
Bradley

ah yes indeed, what happened to the time when a song was a thing to be taught and shared, nice post…..

16 01 2009
Dorian

Hey Pops,

I checked out Sangkhlaburi on Google Earth the other day. Some nice photos and interestings facts. It looks like a really nice place to hang out – even the water looks clean and fresh. The people also look friendly and kind. It is good to hear of your adventures.
Cheers for now,
Dorian

17 01 2009
ashramble

great to see you found some people doing good work in Sangkla Buri and enjoyed your stay…..

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