Culture, culture ……
… sometimes I just don’t get it. Some things just remain strange. But what do you want, if you were born on the other side of the world and now only five months are immersed in a completely different way of life. In addition, to what extent do I understand everything about Dutch culture when I really start thinking about it?
Try to imagine the following: Your Thai neighbors ask if you to join them in the afternoon to the rice field for a party with delicious (afternoon) food. I did not have to think about it for a long time: I do not miss that opportunity to see a bit more of their daily life and celebrations again. More importantly: I want to mix in the (rural) life of Isaan and also testify of God’s love.
Once at the party (after having lunch and realized that lunch would be more ‘dinner’), I immediately regretted it. Loud speakers and even more sound equipment dominated the ‘rice field’ (read: a remote corner, surrounded by trees with an old shack with a few tables underneath). Really, the combinations of goods in Thai life continue to amaze me. Expired huts as homes, but huge luxurious. And now a basic shack with some basic cooking resources (which made me think of of wild camping), surrounded by crackling music from high quality speaker.
It was not busy yet, a number of people from the village, both people from low class and Acaan (teachers) were present. I was one of the first. A somewhat older Kathoey (ladyboy) continued to surround me and was already so tipsy (read: ‘drunk’) that he could not make a decent selfie with me anymore. After questioning myself several times on why I did come to this celebrations, I found a somewhat quieter table. I sat with a man I had met before, when he was visiting my neighbours. Recently, I had the confidence to offer him a Thai Bible and this time he told me that he had already read about Jesus. Hey, that is a bright spot! Because of my limited Thai the time of observing started… frankly, that touched my heart. Both of sadness and of great joy!