My First Days in Thailand
by Katelyn Pauls
We arrived in Bangkok late Wednesday, July 4th. After resting for about 4 hours, we got up and started our journey to Ubon. Two pastors from Bangkok had meetings in Ubon and they drove us in a truck. It was a perfect way to see the Thai countryside. The Thai people are very friendly. When we stopped to eat lunch, the two men driving us just kept filling our plates with food. They didn't want us to be hungry! We arrived in Ubon after dark so we didn't get to see much, but we spent the whole next day being shown around by the other missionaries that are here. The town is much bigger than we expected. I'm told that there are about 93,000 people in it. The markets are a sensory overload for me, with all the smells and people talking in a foreign language. It is very nice to have a wide variety of food to eat though! It’s a little bit difficult for me to find something to eat here, because I’m vegetarian, but I’m managing. I now have a favorite place to eat in the night market!
Our apartment here is quite small. It has one room, closet and a back room that houses both the kitchen and the bathroom. It’s just the right size though. I don’t have to clean much! Plus a big bonus is that we have air-conditioning in our room. However, it is expensive so we only run it for about 2 hours before we go to sleep. To me, the temperature is hot. Today it’s supposed to be 84 degrees but the humidity is almost 80%! I’ve sweated more than I ever have in my life!
The last few days, I have been observing teachers at the language school so I can meet my students and learn how to plan for classes. I’ve never taught before! It seems a little bit overwhelming right now but I know that once I figure it out it will be easier to handle. The language school is very successful in the community. In fact, they have to turn students down because they don’t have enough teachers!
This country is beautiful and the people are very kind. The humidity is rough, but the students are cute and most of them try so hard to please you. With God’s help, I know I can manage. He will help me with all my lesson plans and disciplining students and leading them to Christ. He will be beside me through the good days, when everything goes on schedule, and the bad ones, when no one will pay attention. I know that with God, nothing can overcome me. “Those who trust in the Lord are secure as Mount Zion; they will not be defeated but will endure forever.” Psalm 125:1