I must say it does seem rather quiet with all the Songkran festivities now finished.
Tobi and Eliana were back at kinder yesterday to begin what is Term 4 here. Their “summer” break is from mid June. The new school year begins in mid August. I’m still trying to get my head around that!
Both children are VERY excited about doing swimming this term and have been asking continuously whether it’s their swimming day yet! Tomorrow (Wednesday) I look forward to being able to answer, “YES!”
So I have been reflecting lately on some of the vast differences between living here and back in Australia and I just thought I’d share a few.
- Firstly something like ‘fake tanning lotion’ is an item that CANNOT be found here! In fact it’s the complete opposite. Browse the aisles of any pharmacy or supermarket and all you will find is ‘whitening’ cream and skin bleaching lotions in a multitude of brands. They’re all designed to make the skin paler! Talcom powder can also be used to whiten the skin.
Back home, I did my best to cut out all artificial colors, flavors, preservatives and additives from our diet and it was hard but not impossible, right? Well here I can’t even read the ingredients labels so I have no idea what we’re eating when we buy anything packaged. And I have to giggle every time I walk past the big 20kg bags of MSG for sale at Makro!! That’s just too funny.
Well, we shipped our kid’s car seats over but almost went crazy in those three weeks before they arrived. Driving ‘Thai’ style is definitely a lot quicker when getting in and out of the car but it is crazy dangerous too. I still remember Spencer crawling under the seats, flopping on top of every other person in the car, trying to climb to the front seat… the list goes on. I am still amazed here when I see from new born babies, and every other age of child, riding on motorbikes with their parents- no helmets on either or standing up on the front seat of the car without even a belt on.
What also surprises me is the price differences I see. Last night at Big C, (our local supermarket- Coles/K mart) there were racks of new kid’s clothes for $1.30 a piece and yet to buy cream, margarine or cheese it was (and always is) ridiculously expensive.
Every Thursday we put our big, empty bottles out the front to be filled with drinking water. Last week though, no one came and filled them and we are presuming it was due to the Songkran public holidays so we went to a filling station and did it ourselves. Another new experience for us!
- When a car park is full, it’s no deterrent in Thailand! People simply park their car perpendicularly behind another car. All you need to do is leave your car in neutral, lock the doors and walk away! When the owner of the correctly parked car wants to get out he/she simply pushes your car (left in neutral) out of the way and backs out! I have seen this first hand. The only problem was, the car parked behind us (I was with Joyce at the time) didn’t leave their car in neutral!! We had to get some security officers to jack the car up and move it, which was quite a process!
|Okay, so I didn’t take this photo!|
Well, that’s all I can think of for now, but be assured there are many more!
I’ll leave you with a photo from “camp” (ZOE holiday program).