Wed the 15th
Date: Wednesday, June 15, 2011, 7:02 PM
Wow!! How time flies!! Alathia and I have been in Chiang Mai for two weeks now. The first week, we stayed at the hotel while I look for a house and Alathia transition into the dormitory and new life at the university. God helped us all the way and in every way!!!Since Alathia is very busy with the full start of her studies, adjusting to Thailand and culture shock and keeping up with many after school activities, I will give you an update on her behalf.Alathia's first week of school was great! Every day was a new and exciting adventure for her. Even through the humidity where one sweats constantly, Alathia is a trooper that she never complain much about the weather. She had made a few friends during the first week of school. There are quite a few students from America at Payap. Three students are retired military men who is maximizing their government paid tuition in Thailand, where a dollar goes a long way. Two of these GI students have been very kind to Alathia. Mark helped Alathia and I during orientation and the other is Steve, who is like a big brother, was very protective toward Alathia during her first group school outing, "Amazing Race" around Chiang Mai on Friday. I guess that it is like a scavenger hunt race. After the hunt, they had to put together a power point presentation in front of the Dean of the school! You will find pictures of this event on Face Book. Her team won, by the way. I think the group learned a lot abut collaboration and personal marketing. She was really tired, though by the time I cam to pick her up at the dorm. Her dorm Thai roommate, "Ying" is speaking more and more English with Alathia and Alathia is learning to speak lots of Thai. They both enjoys each other's company as roommates. Ying showed Alathia a piano room behind the dorm, where Alathia can practice after dinner each night. When other students saw her practice, they want to learn to play what she knows. Not only that, but Alathia also found classmates who are Thai, Singaporean, Chinese, African/American and Japanese, (half breeds as my father-in-law would say,) who shared her interests. She is good friends with students who loves to play the guitar, the piano, enjoy drawing and one who was an instructor to boxing! These are the exact hobbies that Alathia is passionate about! Each student is very talented and able to impart what they know to the other. It is very neat, how God brings people of like minded together from around the world in one place. Alathia got to see the house for the first time last Friday, when she came home for the weekend. I live right next door to a teacher from my school. Carole was very kind to offer me to use her washer, so that I don't have to wash all my clothes by hand. I really don't mind it, but with Alathia's clothes from school is added, it is nice to have a machine. I also have become great friends to Seangla, Carole's house cleaning lady. She is the one who help me get this house and helped me move in. She has been so kind to give me rides, bring me food and help in going to pick up Alathia on her motorbike. I still am learning to ride the bike. Since my accident last Saturday, nothing serious, but it made me more cautious on the motorbike. I have begun practicing every day, riding around the neighborhood for about 10-20 rounds.The neighborhood is very safe with security posts at every directions and security guards patrolling the neighborhood on their bike regularly. This week is my second week in the house and I am really enjoying getting settled in. It is fully furnished except for a missing cooking range for the kitchen. By the end of the month, I should be able to purchase a second hand gas range to do all my cooking. Meanwhile, I am working on networking with other missionaries to advertise about my teaching Thai and English. There are lots of foreigners here and many of them are still struggling with the language. I hope to be able to help some of them in learning their Thai. I have a small groups of Thai students who will be coming to my house this Saturday for a conversational English lesson. It is a start, slowly but surely, I will be able to do things to earn my keeps and help missionaries who are doing a great work for the Lord in Thailand and though out Southeast Asia.I am excited to be in the land of my birth and to make a difference in the lives of people here. Though Alathia and I may be far away from the US, our thoughts and prayers are with each one of you. We love you all and wish that you could be close by. Please keep in touch and keep us in your prayers.Love, Wilai and Alathia
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Wilai Wilkerson, Missionary
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