Thursday, December 28, 2006

A Great Day

I've had a really great day today that I just have to tell you about. Nothing in particular special happened, it's just been one of those really feelgood days. It started after lunch, when everyone went out and I stuck on Cassie's CD (The Break-up Song, Choco-latte, Dragosta din tea, American Idiot) and danced around the office (just had to watch out for students passing the open doors). And then we had fun teasing Ajarn Uthai about finding him a girlfriend. And we had cake. And then we went home early at 2:30.

And I got home and Pidar was there. Oh, funny story! Pidar said she'd come by motorcycle taxi, and when the driver dropped her off she (the driver) leant over, gave her a quizzical look and asked her, “is there a farang living here?” Thought that was funny – it must have been the girl from my bank run, as that's the only female driver I've had.

Then Smile made me laugh – he was telling me (because he has exams this week too, like the Rattanathibate kids) about cheating in class, and how the students will wait until the farang teacher has left the room, then copy each other – and if they're too far too see the other person's paper, they'll use a phone to take a photograph! Or (and I think you really had to be there for this one, to see Smile doing all the actions, but I'm including it all the same) looking around at all the other students' papers, “long neck, look-like giraffe”. And we were talking about the differences between US and British English, and how a rest-room is not actually a “loom for sreep” (that's Pidar talking), and how one of Pidar's students once misunderstood “bathroom”, and assumed it was a room where you pay money (baht-room!). Oh the laughs we had.

Then Mair asked if I was hungry (“hew mai?”) and I said I was hew nit-noy (a little bit hungry) and she asked me to koy a minute and I understood everything and everyone was impressed with how well my passa Thai (Thai language) is coming along in only two months. I've gotta say I'm actually a bit impressed too – it is slow, but I'm definitely learning Thai. I can quite often pick out certain words in a conversation (alright, usually they're numbers. But they're still words), and I can sometimes get the general gist. Mair always chats merrily to me in Thai – the maid too – and of course usually I don't understand what on earth they're going on about. But I'm getting there.

After lunch Pidar asked to see a picture of my house, so I went and got my laptop with all my photos and we had a little photo session – I showed them pictures of all the family and they said Joanna was sooay, and Mummy was sooay, and Mair's completely in love with Christian and Justin, and then I showed them pictures of Nanny (also sooay) from Justin & Natasha's wedding (sooay) and said how much khun yai (grandma) reminds me of her. And Pidar said she wants her son to marry a foreigner so she can have a little blonde baby like Harriet to look after!

And then... we took it upon ourselves to go jogging! Mair and Pidar decided they needed some exercise – up and down the road a couple of times – so they put on flip flops and headed out of the gate. I decided to join them so I grabbed my flip flops and dashed out after them, which the maid and her friend found hilarious. Knees up, shoulders back, hup-hup-hup! We looked an absolute sight – all in flip flips, two of us wearing mid-length flowing skirts, jogging our way down the dusty road in peals of laughter. The workmen on the building site across the street looked on open mouthed, scratching their heads. Even the stray dogs stopped to watch. Hup-hup-hup! Turn around, and back up the road again. One more time now! And we're done – por laaou, por laaou (enough, enough!). And we're all going to sign up to aerobics classes at the town hall starting January. Yeah!

And then Pidar was like, “let's go to the mall!” (well actually it was more like “we go centran-tow, ok?” – Central Town, the mall which, ironically, is nowhere near the town centre). So off we went to the mall. Okay, the first time I went to Central Town was by tuk-tuk, so when he drove us down a footpath I was like, fine, that's tuk-tuks for you. But apparently it's not just tuk-tuks! As I discover when Mair drives the car down the footpath and across a carpark, this is a perfectly acceptable shortcut to avoid going way up to the U-turn point (You can understand it though – the mall is more or less at the end of our road, but to get there properly you have to go through two U-turn points, making the journey about five times longer than it would be). So then we have to park. The carpark is packed – and by packed, I mean that all the bays are full, and so are all the overflow bays, which are perpendicular to the regular bays! This, again, is apparently normal. To get into a space we have to heave a car out of the way. To get back out again we have to shuffle two cars up (you know that game, where it's all squares and one space and they're jumbled up and you have to move them around to make a picture or whatever? It's like that) to make a space to drive through.

Me and Mair in front of the mall.

I was telling Mair and Pidar about our super-bargain weekend away at Ko Phangan (for all travel there and accommodation, it's going to work out around 1050 baht – about 15 quid) and so when we got back Pidar was trying to persuade her husband that he needs to take the whole family to Ko Kot (or something like that), and Smile told me we could climb mountains, and then I tried to explain the difference between mountain climbing and rock climbing (note to self: it's quite hard to mime rock climbing in mid-air).

Seriously – I love these people.

In other news, I may possibly have a tutoring job. While we were out 'jogging', a lady came over and asked Mair if I was an English teacher, and though I lost track of the conversation except for the word for “five” (told you it's usually the numbers I catch!), Pidar told me afterwards that the lady wanted to get her five-year old son English lessons – Mair's going to talk to her about it another time. Wonder if it's the same kid I see playing with the others at the end of the road sometimes, who always greets me with “Hello! How ayoo? Wha' yonem? Ha oh ayoo? Wehyoo froh?”.


At 3:20 pm, Blogger Mother said...

Checking back to vocabulary lesson on Nov 13, I see sooay is a good thing to be, so I can wholeheartedly exclaim what very discerning people they are.

At 12:45 pm, Blogger Mother said...

Just seen pic. That's some bear!


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