Camping in Roi-et

church_camp_022.jpgMy weekend in Roi-et was different from what I expected, but it was really nice.� The pictures I've seen of previous retreats showed beautiful resorts with swimming pools and and nice, comfortable looking rooms.� So I was kind of expecting to stay in a hotel.� Instead, I shared a room�11 other girls.� We slept on mats on the floor and shared 1 bathroom.� I didn't mind the mats; they were actually really comfortable!� I didn't enjoy sharing the bathroom so much.� Thai people take 2 showers a day, so we had to shuffle 12 people through the shower every morning and every evening.� Luckily, the weekend was pretty slow-paced.� There was plenty of time scheduled for resting and hanging out with people.

The retreat was a typical church retreat.� There were speakers, discussion times, and games.� I enjoyed all of it.��I felt encouraged by the speakers and the discussions I had with people.� I had a great time hanging out with Khim, Lynne, and Betsy (Khim and Lynne are TESOL�students who attend my church).� I also got to know some acquaintances better and met a lot of new people.� I think I'll feel more comfortable during social time at church in the future.

The only bad thing about the weekend was that I felt really embarrased about how little Thai I know.� On the first day, they passed around a bag of candy and asked everyone to take as many pieces as they wanted.� I suspected that we were going to have to tell one thing about ourselves for every piece of candy we took, so I only took one piece.� I ended up not having to say anything about myself, but�it got me thinking about what I would say if I had to.� I realized that I don't know how to talk about myself at all.� I can say "My name is Emily", but I don't know how to say that I'm from the U.S. or that I'm an English�teacher.� After 8 months in the country, that's kinda embarrasing.��Pretty much�all I can do in Thai is talk about food�and ask where things are.� Oh, and I can talk about the weather because I know how to say "It's hot", "It's cool", and "It's raining".� I'm disappointed in myself.

I don't want to end this post on an unhappy�note, so I'll write about the animals we saw in Roi-et.� The camp we stayed at had big cages with all kinds of animals in them.� There was a monkey cage, a rabbit cage, a macaw cage, and some other cages with animals I couldn't identify.� There was also a big field with water buffalo, an ostrich, and goats in it!� Lynne and I took a walk around the field on Sunday to see the animals.� I got some good pictures of them!

Click here to see pictures of my weekend.� The first few pictures are of Lynne demonstrating how to wear big Thai pants.

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