Since the beginning of July, 2011, I have been a volunteered translator for Chiang Mai Fellowshio Church. It has been over a year now that I have enjoyed using my English in Thailand. We work as a team, one would translate for Thai songs that has no English sub titles. While another person would translate for the preaching and announcements. Each of us take turns to translate about twice a month. (Here are the volunteers: Wilai, Nuan and Ms. Mariam. We all help each other in the translation for our foreign locals and visitors.)
Wow! It is hot in Texas!! I cannot believe that in the Fort Worth area, it is already above one hundred!! It is not even August yet!Here in Thailand, Alathia and I are in the heart of rainy season. It is in the 80's and has been raining off and on during the day and also at night. We have not seen sunshine for 3 days now. But I am thankful that there was not a storm or flooding, just soft pitter patter of the rain. Not so in some parts of Thailand, as they are facing flooding threats. The only draw back to this wonderful rain is that hanging clothes to dry takes forever and there are no dryers anywhere. After one month in Chiang Mai, I have learned to be accustomed to the local life style.
I have a daily routine that was set in placed partly because of my childhood memory. At my grandparents' house, we would rise and go to sleep with the sun. They lived in the country in northern Thailand way back when there was no electricity and no running water. We used kerosene gas in condensed milk can with cloth wick as a lantern. Drinking water came from our own dug wells. Of course, that was over 40 years ago.
Being back in Thailand now, I find myself naturally getting up with the first morning light. I start the day at 5:30-6:00 a.m. The outside light from my bedroom window wakes me up. I never turn on any light in the house in the morning, as I begin to unlock all the glass windows and open all the curtains. There is enough light to read by, in my living room. I can enjoy the cool morning breeze as I have my quiet time and read my Bible. At about 7:00 am, I go next door to feed my neighbor's cat, while she is away. The cat's name is Wan (sweet in Thai) She belongs to my teacher friend from Grace International School, where I will be teaching in August. After spending sometime feeding and petting Wan, at about 7:30 am. I begin to do my morning house cleaning, including washing clothes. I enjoyed washing by hand, as long as its just my daily, one person load. (When Alathia comes on the weekends, we use the washing machine.)By 8:00 or 8:30, I try to rush to the computer, so that I can email or skype my family back home. I have to get ready to start my English and Thai tutoring at 10:00 am. My teaching schedule has been very nice,a slow and steady pace thus far. On Mondays and Tuesdays, I get picked up by an American housewife, whose husband works for a Christian organization to help the natives in church planting. I teach a group of Thai girls in their household conversational English and Bible Studies. I also see a missionary couple from Singapore to help them with conversing in Thai and help some Thai friends with their English in the afternoons. When I am not tutoring, I go to Grace International School, the Christian school that I will be teaching in the second grade. I am still in the process of setting up the classroom. Oh my, but it is a beautiful classroom, with lots and lots of wonderful tools and materials for the children's learning! I can't wait to get it fixed up!! As we look at the first month in review,I have so many things to be thankful for God's abundant grace and provision. God is so good to provide for us a lovely home the very first week we arrived. Though a little rough start at the beginning, by the second week, Alathia is strong in her handling of so many new changes of living in an unfamiliar country.She is adjusting so well in starting over as a student in a new school, adapting to a foreign dormitory life and learning new languages and new cultures.. God has given favors with people and friends to help us. Alathia made many new friends that share her hobbies and interests in singing, drawing and playing the piano. God gave me an instant bond and friendship with Seangla, a Christian house cleaning lady. We would get together to do English lessons over lunch as well as Bible Study and prayer. She is such a kindred spirit. She gave me rides to the market, the post office, the school and where ever I needed to go. She took me to purchase a new Honda motorcycle that I am having so much fun learning how to ride it. I am actually going to ride it for the first time to the school today!!!
This my spacious classroom with a mountain view just out side my door! The mountain is one of Thailand's highest elevation. You can't quite see the top today because of the cloud covering. But it is beautiful!! Thank you for reading all of my updates and keeping Alathia and I in your prayers. We love and appreciate each of you. (I hope you are also enjoying Alathia's pictures in her facebook.) May God bless each of you with grace upon grace and abundant blessings!He is an Awesome God, how can we not love and serve Him?
Wilai Wilkerson, Missionary