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The Real Talk that Never Quite Makes it into the Newsletter

March 1, 2019 4 min read

Let’s get real about living in Thailand.

Real talk…
Every time I go to the bathroom at a certain coffee shop in town, I check for snakes.
When I speak Thai, I usually say “Thank you” when I mean to say “Hello.” Honestly, it’s confusing for both of us.
Once, I almost ran over a chicken with my bike.

Real talk…
Every time I eat cheese in Thailand, my whole body feels like it might die. This has made pizza a real challenge. 
I’ve never eaten so many Tums in my entire life. 
Sometimes Kristy and I spend $11 on a pint of chocolate ice cream, and honestly, we don’t have any regrets. 

Real talk…
About four times a day, I almost get hit by a car or motorbike. At this point, I’m a pro at dodging fast moving vehicles. (Seriously, don’t worry about me, grandma.)
The most common word out of my mouth is, “What” followed closely by the most common phrase I say, “Sorry, what?”
Once a week, a sweet woman cleans our house. Unfortunately, she thinks she knows how to organize our house better than we do. I’m still looking for an iPhone cord she “organized” when I visited Kristy for a week last April.

Real talk…
I had to get a chest x-ray from a machine so old, they had to load film in it each time. I’m told this is a huge improvement from the time my teammates had to get a chest x-ray done in a van.
Every time my neighbor coughs, I can hear it in my house. At this point, I’m seriously concerned for his health.
When I first moved to Thailand, my team kept saying that “Paw Majah was going to stop by Braverly.” It took me two months to realize that this was a branch of immigration and not the name of a small Thai man.

Real talk…
Sometimes we have no idea what people are telling us to do, so we end up writing “warranter” (whatever that is…) on an official document before we realize that people were telling us to write “volunteer.”
Sometimes I respond to people in Spanish. It’s about as effective as you might imagine.
Sometimes I pretend I don’t see the cockroach in our bathroom so Kristy has to kill it. Sorry, friend.

Real talk…
I don’t have a skin disease. Those are mosquito bites.
I guess I always imagined I would consume some sweetened condensed milk in my life, just not every single day of it.
Just because the store’s security guard salutes you when you walk inside, doesn’t mean you should salute him back. He salutes everyone. I’m pretty sure that’s what he’s paid to do. Don’t be that American. 

Real talk…
Sometimes a tiny lizard sleeps under my bed.
Once, a lizard got stuck to a sticky part on a coffee bag and its tail broke off and it died on my coffee bag.
Kristy also smashed a lizard in our door.

Real talk…
At this point, I might love air conditioners more than my family.
In rainy season, I don’t know whether to get completely drenched without my raincoat or put it on and die from heat exhaustion.
I haven’t taken Thai class since October of 2018, and I don’t plan to subject myself to that humiliation any time soon.

Real talk…
Every day I pass an arcade game called “Lucky Papa.” This is why we can’t have nice things, Thailand. 
Mae Sot was awarded “worst air quality in Thailand” in 2018, and we’re on track to win it for the second year in a row.
This morning, I decided to save my lungs from inhaling our terrible air and paid to run at the gym, which has no air conditioner and also leaves the windows open. At this, I’m not exactly sure what I paid for.

But
Real talk…
I love my weird, quirky, Mae Sot, even with its crazy drivers and terrible cheese.
I am insanely grateful to have a team that believes in me and empowers me to chase after the calling God has given me. 
I am constantly humbled that I have been invited into our friends’ lives, that I have a place in the Kingdom of God, that I have a role to play in being the hands and feet of Jesus. 

Real talk…
Some days I wonder if this gift of living and working in Thailand is a dream.
Some days I wonder if any place will ever feel like home so fast again.
Some days I wonder how I will ever leave my Outpour family. 

1 Comment

  • Carol Metzler March 1, 2019 at 2:40 pm

    Boy, you sure know your grandma(s) well. I drew in a deep breath and then had to laugh. Not just once but several times. That’s why I pray for you daily. Thanks for the laughs and the added concerns:) Love you dear granddaughter, Grandma M.

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