Sawadee Ka from the Land of Smiles!
Hi. Bing here. I moved to the “Land of Smiles” almost 5 months ago and thought that it was time to write my first blog entry. When asked if I would do it, my initial question was “could” I do this….people read MY blog????????!! I don’t know anything about this place! I can’t even speak Thai!!! I walked into a well known American coffee shop associated with “my$$bucks” (because crap, a grande frappucino can cost you $6 to live the Hi So life…..I’ll explain later on that), thinking that I had got myself into something that was waaaaaay tooo deep. Even though we had lived in the DC area prior to this, I still had our former country of residence on the brain (which was Egypt) and thought that learning another foreign language would be too much. In addition to that, I missed it terribly.
Lemme stop first and back up. You’re probably wondering why I’m here. And good reason.
How does a gal from National City end up living in Thailand, let alone overseas and WHY?
My reason, the US Military. Married to an active duty military serviceman for almost two decades has opened opportunities for us to live abroad. Two tours in the Middle East–Bahrain and Egypt (and an unaccompanied one for my husband on the Demilitarized Zone between Kuwait and Iraq), and now here in Bangkok, Thailand (although living in different parts of the US also gives unique cultural differences as well), you can become that “expat” that one would read about in books. The “bite” from the “expat bug” can change your entire outlook on the world and Life.
So I’m standing at the door and I am greeted. ”Sawadee Ka, Madam. Can I take you order?”
And I order. And I communicate. ”Tall-decaf-mocha-(with) whip cream…..ka.”
And I get it right.
I notice that there are people from different countries ordering and getting it right. I can hear people conversing in their language, but can successfully order a nice, warm (or cold) beverage and offering (by pointing through the window), feel satisfied and confident, and leave… ready to venture out. And from that incredibly “have nothing to do with writing a blog” moment, I came to the conclusion that I “could” do this. Someday.
So here I am.
I still don’t know everything about Thailand nor am I fluent in Thai, but have learned that everyday here is a learning adventure, whether it’s something good or something you swear you wish you would have never heard or kept your eyes closed to. There are great things here and not so great things, just like any country. And I am glad that I waited.
I hope that you’ll find some insight, confidence and desire to want to venture out, whether it be here in Thailand or another country (or just out your front door to do something you never thought you could do) from the gibberish I offer.