This past weekend, Iven and I have had the privilege of spending most of our time with students from Baan Jai Diaow, helping out with an outreach activity and party to celebrate the beginning of the new school year. Friday was “orientation day” for new Freshman at the Ram 2 campus. The walkways on campus were lined with various campus clubs and groups advertising who they are with banners and booths, and flooded with students in the standard Thai university student uniform: white button up shirts and black skirts or pants.
|BJD Outreach Games|
Our little BJD group handed out punch and candy, invited people to English class (2x each week), explained what Baan Jai Diaow is and just were generally friendly. There were probably close to 30 BJD students involved throughout the day, and we “collected” maybe a dozen or so more at various times. As all things are with BJD, it was a lot of fun, and a great chance to practice listening to and speaking Thai. One of the “different from America” parts of Thai culture (at least for University students) is that people are quick to gather in a group and sing silly songs, while dancing silly dances. We have become pretty familiar with many of these songs, as we have been spending time with BJD for over six months now. They have a song about a gecko, a chicken on a stick, and a fruit song, to name just a few. Everyone is embarrassed, but also loves participating. I found myself at one point sitting and talking with a girl while 2 separate groups of students did dances/songs nearby. She asked me if orientation days in American colleges were the same as here in Thailand. I looked around at the dozens of 18 year-olds spinning in circles and flapping their arms like chickens. “Not exactly,” I giggled.