Teaching English in Thailand: Day 11, Beer and Freedom

Day 11: Saturday 4th July

Fruit at the market that we took to Rowena's
It’s Saturday!! That means a nice little lay in until 9:30, then Kanang and I went to our friend Rowena’s house for lunch. We met her husband Anthony, who is also Filipino, which is great for me as they both speak fluent English! We had a lovely lunch of ‘spring chicken’, which is a whole chicken; first steamed, then deep fried to make the skin crispy. We also had some pasta Bolognese, which was lovely for me, seeing as I haven’t been able to get my pasta fix so far in Thailand! For dessert Rowena had made a sweet pudding, a bit like a big crème caramel! So sweeeeet. We also had an array of fruits, many of which I hadn’t tried before. Rowena and Anthony are a lovely couple, both teachers of English but at different schools. We had a lovely time round their house, and Rowena’s kindness didn’t stop at lunch; she also gave me a lovely dress! The kindness that people in Thailand are showing me is astounding. More about that later with the taxi man!
Some random fruits and the sweetest dessert ever
After lunch, I met up with some other ETAs who are based in the Khon Kaen area. We are all about 1 hour away from each other, so meeting in the centre of KK is the best idea for us all. I met them at the University of Khon Kaen, and we went swimming in the huge outdoor pool! It was so nice! The sun was shining and the swimming pool was the perfect temperature! After a long, hard week, it was the perfect remedy for me.
ETA's at the pool!
For me, and other ETAs in the same position as me, it’s very easy to get caught up in situations that we may not deem as perfect. The smallest issue can feel like a huge knock back whilst at school or staying in a new location. If a Thai teacher leaves you in the classroom on your own when you need help, it feels like the worst thing ever! But it is important to remember that in the grand scheme of things, it’s really not a problem. So, I had my moment of realisation, whilst floating in the magnificent, blue swimming pool. I thought to myself, “I’m in Thailand! I’m in a swimming pool, with new friends, having a great time. It’s been a hard week, but I got through it, and it can only get better!”
Teacher Heidi and Teacher Olivia
Teacher Jodie and Teacher Olivia!

We got a cab from the pool to the Central Plaza, which is a huge shopping mall to get something to eat. The cab driver fancied himself as a bit of a hairdresser, and tried my hair with the car fan for a fair way of the journey! See how kind these people are?! It was so funny, and the results were better than any blow dry I’ve ever received in the UK, hehe. We all wanted some normal food, that didn’t have any rice/curry/soup/noodles/boiled blood etc in! So we settled for a good ol’ pizza! The 6 of us had a nice civilized meal, before going back to our hotel (B2 Khon Kaen Hotel, £4 a night) to get ready for the evening.
Hairdresser/ taxi driver
The evening’s plans consisted of beer and relaxation! We went in search of a street that is known for it’s bars and the amount of farang (foreigners). We found it, thankfully, and rather than ‘letting our hair down’ we were all soon ‘putting our hair up’ because it was so damn hot in the bars! We went to a bar called Didines, which was full of Americans and other foreigners. There was a great vibe coming from there because of all the Americans celebrating Independence Day. A pint of Beer Leo cost only 90THB, which is under £2. We had a few drinks and enjoyed our freedom, along with the sense of feeling normal again, and not in the TET bubble.
ETA Kirsty and I enjoying the taste of a night off (Hair styled by taxi man)
After a few hours, we were coaxed into going to a club round the corner from Didines called U Bar, by some wild drunk Americans. We thought we might as well have a look, seeing as it was free entry! The cub was packed, mostly full of locals (I think) and there was a live band playing which was strange for us Brits! We found a nice spot to stand and watch the band play and attempted to sing along (and failed). In many other countries that I have visited, the men in clubs are sometimes a bit scary or slimy, but in Thailand they are very respectful and simply want to say hello! So every now and then when somebody tapped me on the shoulder, I would say hello and shake their hand politely, then turn back around to my friends who were dancing like crazy people. We left after a short while because we were all knackered!
I fan-girled a teeny bit over this dude!
All in all, it was a very good day! I can see us returning to some of the places that we visited, and making them our locals J


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