Tuesday, October 31, 2006

I got the bus!

Well, they call it a bus. What it actually is is a pick-up truck with some seats and a roof stapled on. I'm so proud of myself. I waited in the right spot, waved down the bus driver and even remembered where to get off (I made a special note of it yesterday when “Auntie” Pee Dar took me to the school). I went in hours before my meeting in the hopes that I would be able to use an internet café, but I couldn't find one. So I wandered around the market for a while. I love this place. I love that there are fruits I've never even seen before, that look like dragon eggs or giant grapes, and the mini bananas. I love that I just walked past a stall selling all kinds of huge scary machetes and meat cleavers – just right there, in the middle of the market. I love that the stall holders don't pounce on you if you linger by their stall for more than three seconds. I love how it's so hot! I LOVE that it feels actually, properly foreign. The whole language difficulty thing just makes it more of an adventure (the language difficulty thing can also be a total pain, but more on that another time).

So, anyway, I turned up at the school like an hour and a half early for my 2:30 meeting with Ajarn Wanna and the Filipino teachers. Wanna looked a little flustered (well I was pretty early), but she took me to her office, which happens to be at the back of a classroom full of students. Who insisted on me introducing myself. So I said hello in Thai, and they just went wild! Easy crowd. If they're all like that then this year's gonna be a breeze. So I told them my name, that I'm from Britain, that I'm the new teacher, that I've been in Thailand for a week. And then I stood there like a lemon, grinning inanely until the teacher said I could go. So I waited in Wanna's office. And I waited. 2:30 came, and there's no sign of Wanna or the Filipinos. It gets to quarter to three, and I realise the meeting must be at 3:30, not 2:30! Eventually Wanna came back, took me on a tour of the school, showed me my office, gave me a newspaper to read. And it was around about then that a little thought that had been trying to get to the front of my mind finally made it. It's Monday today. My meeting's on Tuesday. I wasn't an hour and a half early; I was a day early. No wonder Wanna was surprised to see me.

Oh well, at least I got to use the internet (email from Casandra: she has an apartment with internet; also she caved and bought a phone – yay! Email from Andy: M&S just isn't the same without me (okay he didn't actually say that – I'm reading between the lines a little here). Email from Joanna: bored at work. Email from Daddy: keep in touch).

And then all that remained was to find the way home. This is where I realise I have no idea where I live, so if I can't find the right bus then, basically, I'm screwed (note to self: get Smile to write down the address in Thai, in case I ever get hopelessly lost).


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