Monday, September 11, 2006

Finally Living in the Land

It's Monday and we have now been in Bangkok for 4 days. Wow. I still really can't believe we are actually here. Let me back up and give you a preview of the last 6 days.

We left SLC Tuesday. Very difficult goodbyes with family and loved ones. You should have seen us with all of our carry ons. We forgot that our 2 toddlers, who could each have 1-2 carry ones, would also need to be carried on! It was quite comical actually, trying to pass through security taking off 4 pairs of shoes each time and then putting them back on, then carrying bags, and more bags, and car seats, and 2 sleepy children, and me blubbering all the way! And we were late! We were the very last to board!! Agghh! But due to very kind airport and Delta employees, we made it. And so it seemed to go the rest of the way to Bangkok. Not that there weren't any difficulties, but overall it went fairly well.

Upon arrival in Bangkok, the traffic overwhelmed me. Oh my! I can't see myself ever having enough courage to drive here. It is absolutely crazy! Thank goodness for public transportation.

Since arriving we have been able to see nearly all of Pun's extended family. 18 of them and most of them live right on the same block. They are a very kind and generous family. Pun and I have also spent some time with his great aunt. She is 102 years old! She is blind and pretty much house bound. Helen and Daniel are warming up to her. Actually, Helen really enjoys going to visit her. As many of you know, Pun has a burden for his whole family to know the Lord and especially this aunt. Yesterday, Helen told Pun they should go tell her about Jesus dying on the cross for her. We were both touched. She and Pun went to visit and begin to share with her. Pun is praying for more alone time with her.

As I sit here typing, my mind is going in 100 directions. There are so many new experiences I want to describe for you. To say the least, it is overwhelming, exciting, emotional, scary, and fun. Maybe I am just tired! But it is impossible to tell you everything so as the days go by, I will try to give you little pictures of what life is like.

If you are wondering...Yes, it is extremely warm and humid here. Unusually so for this time of year. But the thunderstorms are awesome!

The first night we were here, we all woke up around 3am (2pm MST) wide awake! So we went outside in the yard and began exploring the night life. Among the highlights were the lizards and the giant snails (in there shells). The lizards climb on the walls inside. I can't figure out how they get in, but they don't bother anyone and they are fun to watch. Helen and Daniel and I love to find them! Pun's parent's yard feels like a tropical paradise. You really don't feel like you are in the middle of Bangkok at all; there are too many exotic plants, trees and flowers, not to mention the little creatures! Maybe I have just been in Utah too long.

Eating Thai food has become adventure in itself. There are many wonderful new foods and fresh fruits and then there are some that I will need to acquire a taste for. I have never been a big fan of vegetables, nor much of a healthy eater. That is all about to change! The pineapple and bananas are incredible, and the grilled meats delicious! There are just so many new flavors. The children are doing fairly well with it all, although Helen has a craving for pancakes! Funny, since she never asked for them at home.

I am surprised at how much is written in English here. Street signs, store signs, and products in the store have a fair amount of English. And there are so many US brand names here. At times I find myself thinking how similar things are here compared to the US. At other times I am shocked by the differences.

Other news some of you may not know, is we are expecting our 3rd baby in April. His family took the news well. We were waiting to tell them when we arrived so we didn't post anything on line. Birth in Bangkok will definitely be a new experience. No more homebirth, it is illegal here. So we have found the only hospital in SE Asia that does water births right here in Bangkok. Thank you, Lord!

Tomorrow we will be leaving to go to Pun's parents ranch for a few days and then on to the ocean for a few more. It should be very nice to see some of the country side.

My computer time is extremely limited right now. If you email and I don't respond, it is most likely because I can't get to the computer. This may go on for the next month or so until our container arrives. I also have no way of uploading pictures for now, either, which is a shame. There is so much I want you to see. It will have to wait.

For now, know that we miss you all and think of you often.


Val said...

Merri -
We are so excited for you guys. We are praying that you will feel at home quickly. Glad to hear that the trip was uneventful for the most part and congrats on #3. Summer is praying for #4 & a puppy at our house - not sure yet how I feel about that prayer. I have the contact info for our friends that live in Bangkok I will send it to you via email. They have an amazing ministry. Love & hugs to all of you. Tell Pun hi from Doug. We thought of you over Labor Day weekend when we were in Chicago with the kids. Doug and Pun skipping thru the park wearing garbage bags - cracked me up. I told Doug how Lavonne came to see you before you left - he says to me "why didn't you go too" If I had know it was an option...well now I just have to get him to take me to Thailand sometime. Love ya, Val

Karen said...

Merri! I can't believe you are there. What an awesome experience. I'm so glad that you have this blog and I will be able to see you go through your changes and life over there. I will be praying for Pun's family and especially that Grandmother. How neat to see Pun's heart for his family!

Congratulations on the new baby!!!

Can't wait to see the pictures. Keep writing. I can't wait to keep reading. Love you!!

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Char said...

Well, this is my first time to leave a comment on a blog page! Don't you feel special? Well, you are, you know. Ladies had Bible Study last night and we prayed for you, adjustments, church, job, family and all. We love you and miss you but excited to see how God will use you there. I will also forward an e-mail from the Barsuhns.

alisa said...

Had a fun party for Aurora on her birthday. My mom and stepdad came by and celebrated with us. The cutie made off with quite a bit of loot. It's a good thing we put a cap on the spending limit I could use for her birthday, otherwise she would be up to her cute eyebrows in toys. Miss you all.

Woke up on Saturday to find snow on the car, so depressing! The mountains all have a white cap of snow on them. The cold season is upon us! Brrr

Allingers said...

Fianlly got a minute to check our your blog - can't wait to see more pictures! We are pryaing for you! Love, Patti Allinger

Merri said...

Thanks for commenting Val,wish I could do the same for you! Thanks for the contact also, can't wait to meet them. And I sure wish you would have come to see us, so I think Doug owes you a trip to Bangkok! WhoooHoooo!!!!

Merri said...

Hey Char! I am so happy to see you on the blog! Even happier to talk to you this morning...HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

Merri said...

Alisa, I meant to email and say Happy Anniversary and Happy Birthday to Aurora on the right days. Just couldn't get to the computer. SO sorry, but I was definitely thinking of you all. I saw a sign the other day that had Aurora's name on it. Missed her...

Merri said...

Hi Patty and Chris, so good to see you on the blog, too! Are you starting a blog? I would love to see it. It takes time but is a fun way to keep in touch. Miss you !

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