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  • Susan Brown

First Days in Thailand

All those sweet, smiling faces!  I was so glad to see the precious children again.  They ran up to greet us with hugs and cries of joy as we climbed out of the truck at the children’s home yesterday.  We saw four new faces — three little girls and another boy.  We also saw one we expected to miss, little Supucket.  I was sure that Bro. Anond had said he had gone to live with a grandmother, but evidently she brought him back, because there he was!

We did miss Kittipong, who is living with relatives. Please continue to pray for his protection. (Scroll down a blog or two for his story.)

We were delighted to hear that Nu Pa Chi’s father called. Nu Pa Chi had run away after failing his grade in school.  We worried that he would be a victim of a predator, but he made it home safely.

Yesterday was a profitable day. Paul and I both woke early, despite the jet lag.  We were starving, but had to wait until the hotel breakfast buffet opened. Once it did, we had lots of exotic dishes to choose from (twice boiled pork ribs with bamboo sprouts, broccoli with oyster sauce, etc.), as well as bacon and eggs and even cereal.

Bro. Bill and Janice Lee arrived in Thailand last week, along with their daughter, April, and 12-year-old grandson, Reid.  They’ve been busy going to the remote villages giving medical care to those who have no other means of help. Brother Ricky Cash, a pharmacist from Mississippi, has been here a week longer, performing the same much-needed service.

They had set aside of few of their busy days to help us settle in.  We spent the day yesterday looking for furniture.  We needed a bed and a wardrobe for our clothes. At the second stop we found exactly what we needed — the right size for the room with lots of storage.  We were ready to buy until we learned that they don’t have it in stock. It would be a month before we could expect to see it — and we know well enough how things work in this part of the world to not look for it at least six weeks.  We passed on it and continued shopping.  At the third stop we found a set that will work well for us and they are supposed to deliver it this morning.  We aren’t holding our breath on that, either, but we went out to the children’s home to get the room ready for it, just in case.

The younger children are out of school this week and so were on hand to “help” us.  We would have got along a lot quicker without their help, but were so happy to see them that we bore the inconveniences cheerfully.  We moved everything from the bedroom into the office that will now be our kitchen and scrubbed the floor.  What a flock of lizards we chased off!  I’m afraid they may object to us taking the room back. As soon as the furniture arrives I will take a taxi back from the hotel and start unpacking and organizing.

The main thing for Paul on the schedule today, is to start looking for a truck.  Please pray that they will find exactly the right one. And please pray for his safety as he learns to drive on the “wrong” side of the street and to shift gears with his left hand.  Traffic here is always terrible.  He is sure he will manage just fine.  I, on the other hand, will only get behind the wheel if someone is bleeding or unconscious and I am the only driver left.

Maybe not then!

Of course, we have to wait on the furniture before we do anything else, so we are catching up on other things while we wait.  I’m not so good at waiting, and I am remembering how I do lots of that here.  Nobody is in a hurry and nothing happens on time.

The Centara hotel is a nice place to wait, though.  It is modern for this part of the world and comfortable. Of course, there is the annoying way that the air conditioning and lights will only work when the key is inserted in the special slot.  That way you won’t waste any electricity while you are out, because you will certainly take your key with you.  Since the weather is very warm, the room is always roasting and stuffy when we come in.  That is a minor, inconvenience, though, and we enjoy the modern bathroom and spacious room.

I hope the wait is short this time. We have only today and tomorrow to get the truck ordered, because Saturday will be a special training day for the staff at the children’s home.  Bro. Ricky brought a microscope with him and will be explaining about germs and the importance of washing the dishes.  (The kids just rinse their dishes at the hydrant and set them up to dry.) We will also talk about discipline and several other matters that have been a concern to us.

The rest of the time we will be traveling to churches until the Lees leave next week.  After that we will be settling in and getting our new life started in earnest.  We still have to buy phones and figure out how to get the Internet, among other things.  I will be starting to teach the children English again — this time with a suitcase full of teaching tools I brought with me.  I also will begin Thai classes. I can’t wait until I can talk with these kids!

I will be having Bible study with the ladies on Saturdays, and Paul will jumping feet first into the preaching and teaching.

Thank you for your prayers for a safe journey.  Now we need grace and wisdom as we settle in.  And patience!

Paul also wrote an update.  I will post it next.

Blessings from Thailand,

Susan

PS  Just heard that the furniture is NOT coming today after all. Am I surprised?

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