This week during my internship in Thailand has been full of culture and fun. I was so blessed to have a fellow Nyack student come out with a team from her church and to spend time with them throughout the week. Along with the day to day tasks I was also able to go along on several cultural events with her and her group. I rode an elephant, went to a cultural dinner, and shopped a special Sunday night market. But, even apart from these touristy attractions this week was all about falling in love with Thailand.
I would look out the front door in the morning at beautiful mountains and trees with a blue sky and fluffy clouds. This place shows me just how creative God is as he shaped each culture and nation. God has been showing his beauty this week to me and I have really been falling in love with this amazing country this week. It is crazy how much I love this place and that I have already been living here for a month. Thailand is an amazing country and I have loved getting to know the people. Living in a home with 60 Thai people has given me great insight into this unique culture and helped me make many lasting friendships. The culture and people are amazing, but so incredibly different from the American life I’m used to living, especially as a student of Intercultural Studies at Nyack College. With four weeks of Southeast Asia under my belt, I’m still moved to appreciate life every day. After only a short time here I have realized how new and unique these people are.
1. Thai people are incredibly polite and respectful. The traditional greeting includes putting one’s hands together and giving a slight bow. Upon every meeting you greet people in this way. Even at a semi-professional soccer game after a red card had been handed out the player left the field, but not before first politely giving a bow to the entire crowd.
2. Thai people are relaxed and more event oriented as opposed to time oriented. I have always been a go-with-the flow type so my personality fits in well here. Life is less chained to time like we tend to be in America. Instead people and relationships are of top priority.
3. Along with loving relationships, the people of Thailand value community. Time spent together is the best way to pass the time. Even simple trips to the market are made exponentially better when a friend comes along. They are a collective people living in stark difference to the individualistic society I’m accustomed to.