Aug 18, 2006 – The Dormitory

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This dorm was in much better condition than the one we visited on Wednesday night, mostly due to the support from Japan and the attention it receives from Mr. E and his students. Their fundraising allowed a new building to be built last year which now serves as the girls dorm and guest room and an office. The kids here are lucky to be here and able to receive an education but their life is far from easy compared to Canadian standards. The kids do their own laundry by hand (in buckets) and its hung to dry. The showers are simple cold water showers, they sleep on thin mats on the floor and their diet is rice, vegetables, a bit of meat and water or tea. But, they all come from the same village in the mountains and are like one big happy family. There are 39 students there and we didn’t see one dispute in the time we were with them. They are able to go back to the village for holidays but spend the rest of the time including weekends at the dorm and school.

Saturday we had the option of bringing a few students with us to see their village or take all the students to the local hotsprings. We chose the latter and they had a lot of fun there. I however didn’t fare so well. Around the relatively small pool were 4 seperate, busy, open air kareoke bars. My head felt like to was going to explode and I would have been quite happy if it did. There was not a moment of silence or tranquility associated with this pool. When I went to the back of the truck to lie down, I was immediately surrounded with boys that poked and proded me simply out of curiousity.

The next day we said goodbye to the kids and headed to Chiang Mai, stopping to visit another dorm on the way.