Elephants in Ayutthaya

So my appreciation of cockerels that I gained from the temples yesterday ended at approximately 5am this morning when I was woken up by two of them screeching like a car horn shoved through a food processor. I very nearly opened the door and tried to throw something at them, before remembering that Cockerels are kind of a big deal here so that would’ve probably got me into trouble.

Despite this I managed to generally have enough sleep, and in the morning I went with Bubpha to one of the nearby markets to buy a few more things for my house. After that we went back to my house to dump them before travelling on to Ayutthaya, and I got some time to take a few photos of my accomodation. After having a major freakout with it yesterday, looking at it again it really isn’t too bad; once I’ve arranged all my stuff it should be looking a bit more spacious, plus it will be nice to have a living area to myself. Harry later told me that several people had phoned the British Council to complain that they were having to sleep on a hard floor and that everyone was hostile to them, so in comparison my situation is actually pretty good.

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That's Bubpha to my right, and her grandson to the right of her.

That’s Bubpha to my right, and her grandson to the right of her.

We then went to Ayutthaya’s floating market which was pretty cool. Floating markets are basically markets that are based on the sides of riverbeds- this one was very busy and there was a lot of interesting stuff being sold, although since I was keeping up with Bubpha, her son’s girlfriend and her grandson (her son was working) i didn’t really get the chance to buy anything. What I did get to do, however, was feed an elephant, which was a strange experience- they take food straight out of your hands with their trunks and generally look like they could cause a stampede any second. Based on that, I didn’t tease it before giving it food like I had done with the turtles yesterday.

I like this one. It makes me look like I'm conducting it.

I like this one. It makes me look like I’m conducting an elephant.

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Bubpha seemed to really like taking photos of me, and at the Ayutthaya temple we went to after the market there are photos on my camera of me pretty much standing in front of every major or minor landmark (not that I’m complaining- even I’d admit i look kind of OK in some of them, rather than my usual photo pose, a mix of slightly awkward and intentionally stunned).  After that, I met up with Harry and his mentor again and we went to a restaurant in Ayutthaya, which was probably one of the nicest meals I’ve had here so far. Having said that, I tried traditional Thai dessert for the first time (a sesame seed dumpling in soup), and I think that’s something that will take me time to warm to.

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And now I’m back at Bubpha’s house, as she offered to let me stay another night before moving into the school tomorrow. Depressingly, my biggest challenge of the day was having to iron my work clothes- despite turning 21 tomorrow i can count the amount of times I’ve used an iron on one hand, so I suddenly had to do a half decent job of it. I think I managed it tonight, but the acid test will be if anyone gives me any criticism of it when I start teaching tomorrow. Hopefully they won’t, and hopefully I can start to grab hold of this whole educating people thing that’s the focus of my trip too.

 

PS

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