Yes, I am here in Chiangmai, for the second time. The first time I was here was after a few days we set our foot on the land of Smiles. Everything happened so quick then. When we arrived, we only had a few days to prepare for the World Outreach consultation here in Chiangmai. I remember how thrilled the kids were for their first train ride (and actually, it was mine, too! haha).
We had practically zero thai when we first came here. After the WOI consultation, we decided to stay two more weeks for the Church Planting Seminar. We stayed in this very same hotel, which I think is very contributory to me missing my kids a lot! (Buhuhu…). Oh speaking of my crying sessions, when will I ever stop being such a crybaby?
Well, it’s amazing how so many things can happen in 9 months. Like the other day I was talking with the lady at the hotel reception in Thai. She has really become a good friend during our first visit as she helped us look for a cake for Ria’s birthday, look for candles and party hats then. She was amazed at how I could speak Thai! I was amazed myself. 9 months, huh? not bad. I am not that good, but really if I speak with a Thai, I don’t have a choice but to really exhaust every possible word that I know. Just tonight I bought Khaaw phat Kai (fried rice with chicken) at the local restaurant who used to know me 9 months ago too. I spoke in Thai to her this time. I then went on to buy “rotee”– i think this is more of a Malaysian dessert on the other side of the road and while waiting, I also chatted with the lady in Thai. She said her older sister is in Bangkok and is also a Christian, we talked about a Filipino friend of hers, where we are staying and what we are doing in Chiangmai, and many other things.
When I got back to the hotel, I felt like… I was walking on the same streets, lived on the same hotel 9 months ago , but so much in me has changed. I was no longer afraid to go out, I was more confident this time. Learning the language has brought much of that confidence, but the grace of God surpassed everything else. 9 months and counting… in Chiangmai and beyond.