Monday, June 05, 2006

Two weeks till I'm gone

Wow, it's been a while since I've posted. First off, I think I have managed to change the settings on my blog so anyone can comment, not just those with blogs. I wondered why some of my readers (or those who claim to be reading) were not commenting; I know you people, and you usually have a lot to say!

I've quit my job in preparation for my move. I still have an amazingly long list of last minute things to do, not the least of which is figure out how to pack my personal possessions and those of my daughter in such a way that I can access everything easily during our trip (and hopefully not exceed the weight limit on our baggage allowance). We're going to a wedding immediately before the trip to Asia, so we have a lot of stuff and a lot of time between leaving here and arriving on the other end. I'm so excited to see John though. In case any of you are considering a separation from your spouse longer than a couple of days, it's not a good idea. Phone calls are just not cutting it.

Chantrea (or Shoo-Shoo, as she's known around here) has two new teeth (her eye teeth) and now weighs 28 pounds. That's pretty good for 19 months. She's also started playing a game she learned from her cousin, where she pretends to be the "tickle monster." She puts her hands up by her face and wiggles her fingers while sneaking up on you. You have to scream and act surprised when she attacks, or she has to do it again. She also demands commentary, in that someone has to be saying "Here comes the tickle monster!" I know it doesn't sound all that funny but it's hysterical to see the little glint in her eye when she thinks she's being soooo scary.

I don't usually do book reviews but I just finished a great one. It's From the Land of Green Ghosts: A Burmese Odyssey by Pascal Khoo Thwe. He's a native of the Paduang tribe in Burma, and this is his memoir/autobiography. He describes his childhood and tribal customs, his years as a university student and later his time as a resistance fighter against the Burmese government. He spent months in the jungle near the Thai border with insurgents. Eventually he was able to smuggle himself into Thailand. With the help of a contact made years before, he immigrated to England, where he later graduated from Cambridge University with a degree in English literature. I love books that describe other cultures and I love stories about people overcoming incredible odds, and this book does both. He describes listening to Aung San Suu Kyi (a Nobel Peace Prize winner and the inspiration for U2's "Walk On") and the adoration the students felt for her, and later meeting her husband and sons. I picked it up at the library just because I've got Southeast Asia on the brain. Definitely worth a read.

Finally, in honor of my soon-to-be new country of residence, a word about the King of Thailand, who just celebrated 60 years on the throne. Truly an amazing man. He was actually born in Boston while both of his parents were students at Harvard. He speaks four languages, plays jazz clarinet, composes his own music, dabbles in horticulture, and has written and translated books. He genuinely seems to regard the Thai people as his children (in that he is responsible for their well-being). The Thai people adore him. The U.S. should be so lucky.

1 comment:

Zimm said...

I know we basically never see you guys, but I'm gonna miss you! Best of luck...