by Maimuna, Co-Director, IHF Chiang Rai
Following hasty introductions and generous offers to join them, the children went back to their meal, glancing at me warily. I could hear them thinking: “not another one!”
I woke up the next morning disoriented and homesick, to familiar sights and sounds; showers running, hurried breakfasts, uniforms being ironed, last minute homework and the all-important lunch money. In another place in another time many miles away, my teenage daughter in Zambia will be getting ready for school in a similar fashion; albeit with a lot more grumbling. I was at home.
At the end of a whirlwind week of introductions, chores, school pickups, online postings and a lively fundraising Peace Concert to raise funds for the Centre I was able to put a face to the names and got to know the children’s routines and habits. I was also able to say a few Thai phrases with a little help (and giggles) from the children. Every time I am stuck; whether it is switching on the stove, directions to the shop, where to buy talk time, talking to taxi drivers, I get by with a few handy hints from the children.
The children and I are gradually warming towards each other, and I look forward to many more exciting weeks at the Thailand Centre.