Saturday, November 24, 2007

Trying to process

I am:
Privileged to have been able to live among real Thai families.
Trying to process my thoughts
Thinking of all the articles I want to write.

I ate:
Goat curry
Deep fried grass – a speciality of this area
Prawns – after pulling their heads off. (This will only mean anything to people who know that I am squeamish and that I don’t ‘do’ seafood or things that look like creatures.)
Fresh coconut (not old tough ‘coconut-shy’ coconuts!)
Spicy fish soup
Muslim roti
Rice soup (traditional Thai breakfast)

I saw:
Ghost crabs
Fiddler crabs
Horseshoe crabs
Sand-bubbling crab
Hermit crab transferring to a new home
Sanddollars (dead and alive)
A snake (my first in the wild)
A water monitor lizard
An elephant by the side of the road
A slow loris – a night monkey
Lar Gibbons
King Crown Gibbons
A Crab eating Macaque
An egrit
A nest of mating eagles
A Brahminy kite
Rubber trees – collecting sap

I didn’t see:
Big spiders in the jungle (phew)

I made:
A batik print
Packaged soap

I planted:
Orchids as part of a reforestation project
Seventeen Rhizophora mangrove trees

I dressed in:
Muslim dress for the celebration of a neighbour’s upcoming trip to Mecca.
A bandana!

I declined:
To eat the egg of the horseshoe crab, there and then on the beach.

I heard:
Gibbons singing
Black Crested Bulbuls singing
Goats bleating
Cows mooing
Cats and kittens mewling
A cat fight
Cockerels cock-a-doodle dooing
The sea

I remembered:
One of the things I loved about Husband: that he knew stuff like this. I stopped listening at some point.
Being 11 and copying a picture from an ancient encyclopaedia for a project to show how rubber was collected.

I found it hard:
To sit on the floor all the time without fidgeting.
To use the squat toilets when my legs ached from sitting on the floor


Pacha said...

Oh it sounds so incredible JJ! How do we get to read the articles you are to write?

JJ said...

Hi Pacha, oh, it was so wonderful -I hope I'll find the right words to start talking about it soon. Some of the articles are for the BK market, but I'm thinking about some travel websites too, the British market and possibly educational markets too. But I'm not sure yet. When I eventually get round to building my website (HA HA HA) I hope to post some of them there!

Lane said...

You've put soo much into those few lines. Can't wait to read details and see pics. You must be buzzing:-)

JJ said...

I'm ... yes, I am. I'm hoping my thoughts will consolidate ... I've got verbal diahhroea with my family as I remember little stories, but I hope at some stage I'll find the right words.

Thanks Lane.


Leigh said...

Wow. What a fantastic experience. What a marvellous thing to do with time to yourself (instead of flaking out in front of the telly, and wasting the days away). Much admiration.

But tell me, JJ, emotionally speaking - did you cope without the dreadlocks?

Jen said...

Gosh, it sounds amazing, even in those little bite-sized nuggets. Tell us more!


JJ said...

Leigh, thanks honey. God, it was fun. I secretly rather thought it might be one of those experiences you enjoy after the event, but I loved every second of it.

The dreadlocks? Well, I just know it would've been even better with the right hair style!

Jen, thanks. I've woken up this morning (sunday) with the words, bubbling out I couldn't even make my toast without disappearing to find a bit of paper to scribble down some thoughts.

I will try to blog some of it...


Rebecca said...

It sounds magical JJ!

I LOVE making batik - I did quite a lot of it when I lived in Indonesia. I remember Loving the smell of the hot wax!

What did you make??

Deep fried grass? Sounds weirdly wonderful.

Can't wait to read about your experiences when you're feeling less overwhelmed.

Carol and Chris said...

It sounds absolutely mind blowing JJ and I can't tell you how relived I am that you didn't hate every minute of it (I think I would have felt slightly responsible!!).

I can't wait to hear all about it!!

C x

JJ said...

Rebecca, I'll post my batik at some point, but don't get excited. I've got a degree in Fine Art, but that was sculpture, NOT painting!

I think the battered, deep fried grass just goes once and for all, to prove my theory that anything, including brown paper bags, taste delicious battered and deep fried. It was completely delicious.


I would, of course, have blamed you entirely, so I should say thank you for telling me about it.

I secretly wondered if I would like it a lot AFTER the event, if you know what I mean, but I didn't I loved it during and after.

I'll warn you now I've got 600 photos and get verbal diahhroea when anyone mentions it. You'll be hiding all week!


Caroline said...

It sounds overwhelming and incredible. Looking forward to the articles.