Monday, April 2, 2007

The Heat

I thought the plane ride was long, but the first three days were the longest ever. They’ve been amazing, realizing I’m in a different country and just experiencing Bangkok (and Thailand!), but seriously long. Hmm, why might that be… it’s possible that it has to do with the weather we were ‘graced’ with: 100°F+ and 90% humidity. Combined with the fact that I sweat a lot (it runs in the family or something), it all makes for a ‘nice’ day out in the sun. In Thailand, there’s just never a time when I’m outside and not sweating. The three days we were in Bangkok all we did was go outside and walk around to Wats (temples), downtown, and to a government building. The only relief comes from the water taxis- because of the wind that flows through-, most indoor places (especially our hotel room)- thanks to the air conditioning- and the occasional breeze that grants us a few moments of contentment.

For the first three days sweating was the story of my life. The minute I walked outside the hotel my hair went up and the sweat came like I was never not sweating. I was trying to think of something comparable back home. If you’ve ever been to the Grad on Thursday nights for line dancing, it’s kind of like that, non-stop dancing on that horribly crowded dance floor, except for here, I’m trying to be as still as possible while sweat drips down the back of my legs (and everywhere else for that matter) and my hand moves vigorously with the makeshift fan that’s really just a fourth a sheet of cardstock that I grabbed from an architecture exhibit at Silpakorn University. Now, usually I’m embarrassed by my sweating habits but here everyone is just as sweaty and hot as me so it’s not as bad. We’re all in the same boat (or sauna) and the sympathy for a sweaty back goes a long way. The only people not sweating are the Thai people. Their sweating genes must have been bred out over the years. I don’t need to be Thai and not sweat; I just need a breeze, some shade, and something cool to drink and I’ll be more than content. I’m very thankful that Chiang Mai, where I am right now, is a bit milder in temperature and humidity, although I haven’t spent much time outside. I’m going right now to brave the mid afternoon sun, so we’ll see…


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