Saturday, January 17, 2009

Ashley, Steph and I went to Thailand early and we all went to a small island in the southern part of Thailand. We went to Raliey Beach and stayed in the jungle and went rock climbing, snokeling, swimming, hiking and kayaking all over the island. It was amazing. We went snokeling at night and swam with the photoplankton.

On the 15th, we made our way back to Bangkok and met up with everyone in our group. A few things about that small trip have really stuck out in my mind. First of all, even though many of the Thai's don't speak English, the little English they know is about peace, no war and the hope of a bright future with Obama.

After our short trip to the islands, we made our way back to Bangkok. Our first day in Bangkok was spent with the Asia Foundation and CPRC. Learning about the boarder conflict between Cambodia and Thailand was very interesting because I didn't know it was such a big issue between the two countries. I related the Thai/Cambodia boarder conflict to the Germany/France conflict decades ago. It is really difficult to understand why they can't work closer to try and come to some kind of agreement but I also understand that giving up land for Thailand is admitting they were wrong.

The child protection agency was really wonderful. Joe explained everything in such great detail and really helped us understand trafficking of children, women and men. I had not known that men were trafficked as much as women in Thailand and that Thailand changed its trafficking law to include men in the law. I really appreciated the information that I was given and it has really helped me understand the culture and conflicts in Thailand and Asia much better! Later on I'll post more about the Weekend Market and the leaning Buddha!

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