Mae Chan Village Homestay

17 Oct

This week the Mirror staff went on a staff appreciation “seminar” (a.k.a. road trip). They sent the volunteers on a homestay, mostly I think because they didn’t really know what to do with all of us while they were gone. Because all the staff were at the seminar, the interns joined us on the homestay. We stayed with P’Wen – an interesting Thai guy who’s friends with all the core people at Mirror. I still haven’t figured out what he does, I just know he has a lot of money. Basically he keeps going to school to get more degrees, builds his house and helps out at Mirror. His house was probably the nicest one I’ve seen in Thailand. AND it had the first bathtub I’ve seen in this country. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to stay at P’Wen’s house because there were just too many of us. And I’m not sure how keen he was to have us crash at his bachelor pad. He has several other buildings on his property that look like they were made for homestay though. All the interns and the girl volunteers stayed in one building with 4 bedrooms, and the boys stayed in a round little hut. As far as accommodations go it was by far the nicest homestay any of us had ever been on. The bathrooms with western toilets and real showers were a particular treat.

This homestay was also a little different because we weren’t there just to work. We did paint a childcare center, but they planned several activities for us as well. We visited a winery/tea plantation and we learned how to weave bamboo baskets. We also had LOTS of free time, which we found various ways to fill. Some ingenious volunteers made a set of dominoes out of bamboo, we had a talent show where people from each country performed (the Americans did a rap to Yankee Doodle), we watched movies in Thai and hiked mountains to watch the sun rise. I even played cards, which made me feel like such a rebel. Cards are strictly contraband at Mirror, but some of the interns from Bangkok had brought some. I figured if the people who were in charge of the volunteers invited me to play then I was probably ok. The best part of the whole trip was spending so much time with all the volunteers and interns. We really got a chance to get to know each other, maybe a little too well. All in all it was a long but really fun week.

I’ve posted a few pictures, but there are more on facebook if you want to check them out.

 

Lots of downtime = LOTS of games

 

 

The view from the winery we visited was amazing. The photos simply do not do it justice.

 

 

All the volunteers and interns at the winery

 

 

This guy taught me how to weave baskets and I made this one (mostly) all by myself. Awesome!

 

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