Pah Leurat - Saturday, July 10
Every year I intend to have time to upload photos and post blog entries at least every few days. Most years I start off pretty well, as I did this year with daily messages from Bangkok and Chiang Mai. After we get busy here in Pah Leurat, some years I manage to follow through better than others, depending largely on how much time I end up spending with the group during their mornings of teaching and afternoons of lesson planning. The way it works out, sometimes I'm needed more than others and sometimes I simply enjoy watching.
This year there has been some of both, and the upshot is that while I've had little time for the blog I did get to see a lot of good teaching and now have quite a few photos to share. At this point I doubt I'll get the chance to edit and upload many, if any, until after the Inside Thailand kids are back home in America, but as soon as I can I will.
Today is Saturday and tonight, after two weeks of making friends in this community, there will be a huge thank you party in anticipation of our Monday night departure.
Today the American kids all slept in, and then after brunch helped their Thai peers blow up balloons for tonight's party. We're expecting a crowd of at least sixty or seventy, so Boosaba and her team have been cooking and setting up since 6:00 this morning. It's another very hot day and she looked like she wanted to join in the boys' water fight — but not before she's finished astounding us all with yet another glorious feast.
This afternoon Boosaba's brother and I took the kids across the "Indiana Jones" suspension bridge about five miles downstream from here. It's strong enough for a light motorcycle, but it's rickety and sways a lot which makes crossing the river feel like an adventure.
During Inside Thailand's early years this bridge was the only way to cross this river, other than a canoe or a three-hour road trip. Now we can drive our truck across a concrete bridge right here in Pah Leurat — a dramatic change which is slowly bringing the long-isolated communities across the river into the motorized and electrified modern era.