Postbox letter from Jey
Go for the adventure, go to travel, enjoy and work hard but don't expect to make a difference to Thai society.
Are certain Thai characteristics often inaccurate and overpraised?
When all is said and done, my school students are among the most engaging, fun-loving characters you could ever wish to meet. Whilst they are predominantly pragmatic in their attitudes towards diversity, they are generally genuine in their beliefs about equality.
Postbox letter from Philip
My teacher friend has seen teachers hit a student and another teacher call a young child 'crazy' because they didn't understand the question and asked for help
Postbox letter from Winston
I understand if someone calls me farang in the street, outside the school, that they don't mean to be rude. It's just what Thais call us. But it's not appropriate to use this word at school.
There's nowhere like an ESL staffroom when it comes to a crazy and diverse range of characters
People become ESL teachers for all kinds of reasons. Nowhere else will you find such a mélange of backgrounds, attitudes and beliefs, which is what makes the ESL staffroom like no other you’ll ever work in.
Strange things that have happened to me over the last few weeks
These might well have happened anywhere else in the world for that matter. On the other hand, things that may well not have happened anywhere else in the world, other than Thailand.
Thai people have generally behaved impeccably during this period of hardship.
As impenetrable as Thai culture can seem, and as frustrating as certain things can be, I feel genuinely blessed to be here in these hard times of COVID-19. Nearly everyone here wears a mask. That is not the government forcing them to do it, but the people themselves willingly doing the right thing.
Let's evaluate what happens here in Thailand as something we can learn from rather than condemn.
I firmly believe that we can look at Thailand and learn a lot about how we prepare our kids to enter society and live rewarding lives with the resources they have and priorities they live by.
Every song can be a mini language lesson
Over and above the benefit of learning the language, listening to Thai songs will allow the learner to ‘get a feel’ for the country – how it thinks, how sentiments are communicated, the culture, the essence of being Thai, at least in the context of relationships.
The promised land or the den of lions?
One of the books I recently read is Bangkok to Ben Nevis Backwards, by Phil Hall. It could have been my story, minus the marriage to a Thai woman, a son, and an almost completed house in the countryside.