Sunday, December 26, 2004

Merry Christmas from Sunny Thailand!

Howdy folks!

Well, it's Christmas Day here in southern Thailand, a hot, sunny and breezy day. While most of you are tucked in your beds asleep, visions of sugar plums dancing through your heads, awaiting Santa and his reindeer to alight atop your roof, I'm just enjoying the day as if it were any other regular day here in Thailand.

Being that the area I'm living in is predominately Muslim and/or Buddhist, there isn't much happening here, except people gearing for the end-of-year celebration to rock-in the New Year.

Most of my er, uh...Christmas cheer, was obtained from the happy smiles on my students faces throughout the week as they colored and prepared Christmas cards for their parents. Most brought me Christmas cards, and I received a pretty, little heart shaped sachet from one of my first grade girls and also a "Winnie the Pooh - Tiger tree ornament," both of which I will undoubtedly hang on to for life.

It was so much fun watching the children's faces as they gazed at our classroom Christmas tree and intently sketched snowmen, Santa Claus, Christmas trees and presents on their cards, crayons and colored pencils flying through their little hands as they completed their little works of art, finally bringing them to me with serious looks on their faces, for my final scrutiny.

I'd take each card in hand, study it for a while, pointing out what they had drawn and finally exclaim, "Beautiful!" or "Wonderful!" which of course caused a huge smile to break out on their face.

The remaining part of my Christmas cheer came from an unexpected package I received in the mail from Lansing, Michigan and a very unexpected e-mail in my Yahoo box.

The package I received was from my big Cyber-sis, Shirl-the-Pearl, and contained two books. One, "The Dive from Clausen's Pier" and the other, "Ladder of Years," both of which I had been wanting to read.

Thanks Shirl!

I'm already done with Clausen's Pier, finishing it in a record two days. It truly was one of the best books I've read in a long time. It really made my holiday season!

The unexpected e-mail was from one of my childhood friends, Raul Herrera, a.k.a., "Camel" who's brother Jesse, I've been trying to hunt down over the internet. The irony of this is that Raul and I used to discuss traveling to Asia, as kids in high school will dream about far off places.
Only thing about that was that both of us DID end up in Asia. Raul has been living in Japan for the last 20 some-odd years and here I am in southern Thailand after a year in China.


He supplied the information I'd need to contact his brother, who' s living in Missouri now. Funny how we all seem linked somehow.

Merry Christmas to you all!


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