Met-Chohm-Phuu (Appleseed) Biodiesel in Thailand

Creating Appleseed Biodiesel reactors in Thailand in rural areas for farmers with the PDA.... stories from a farang in Krabi... biodiesel back home in NC... and whatever else needs to be told online in my blog....

July 18, 2006

“Kawtawt: Phom Put Thai Mai Gang Krap” (and a sigh)

The unfortunate translation: I’m sorry, I don’t speak Thai very well (and a sigh)

Well, it turns out that all the latest blog entries were stuff that I had been meaning to do before I got to Thailand, but I never got around to it until now. I’ve been in Thailand for about 10 days now, and I’m finally starting to get back into the groove again. I’m not passing out at 7pm anymore, ohh no, back to the late 1 AM nights just like the states. I’m loving the food and now my body and stomach are up to handling it again. It’s been great seeing Nuu Far again and also all my other Thai (and CH friends). And then there’s that Thai language thing….

Thai language is hard. I really forgot about this point. I showed up here and thought I could pick it right back up, but I’ve been fumbling for the right word for virtually everything. Except food. My Thai vocab’s still flawless with food (I guess that shows what I’m really thinking about all day). But it’s just hard, the tones, the speed of understanding, and the interesting dichotomy of Thai language in society.

Here’s what usually happens. Pretend you’re Thai (or continue to be Thai). I start walking up your way, looking lost as always. Here’s what you’re thinking: okay, he’s a foreigner. A farang (literally, a guava). Obviously, the white skin, beard (yuk), and brown hair are giveaways. He wants to ask me something. Crap. Switch to English mode. Ohh wait, he’s speaking Thai! Yay! He’s got an accent, but I can deal with that. He wants to know what bus to take to the BTS Skytrain. Okay, I’ll tell him in Thai, “take the 147. But wait, that only goes part of the way and then you have to catch the 114. Or you could take the minibus over there for 5 baht more. But traffic’s really bad now, it might be best to get a motorcycle taxi.” Wait, he’s looking at me weird. I guess he doesn’t get it. I’ll slow down and tell him again. Here we go again….

And so it goes, until I get completely lost and hop on a bus and pray for the best. One of these days I need to get in a Thai class. It’s tough because if you speak a little Thai then the people get excited and friendly and speak normal Thai speed. But for me, that’s like popping a speed pill for my brain. I’m slow, but it’s fun. I’ll get it eventually. Immersion learning style.


  • At 12:13 AM, Anonymous *GIB* said…

    Yo! man...Don't sigh na. Your Thai will be better. I'll support you na ja! see ya


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