MY FIRST FEELINGS IN THAILAND: Carla from Spain

My name is Carla, I am from Spain and I live in a city close to Barcelona. I studied Primary Teacher's degree and I finished it two years ago but I couldn't find job in Spain. So, at the beginning of this year I took a decision: I wanted to live a unique, interesting and exciting experience, to do some volunteering task about education in some place in the world. After search and contact with different associations, finally I found COCAT in Barcelona, that association also works in volunteering tasks, and then, COCAT gave me the opportunity to come to Thailand collaborating with the VSA (Volunteering Spirit Association) to participate as an English teacher in a school of Sakon Nakhon, North East of Thailand.

After a long trip, on 31st of October I arrived in the South of Thailand. First week was for introduce us in the Thai culture and to know other volunteers. Taxi stopped in a little neighbourhood where it was my home first week. That week I knew other volunteers from France and Indonesia and we knew some Thai friends. They help me a lot to be fine, calm and, step by step, I was more comfortable every day. We did a lot of activities together and in only four days, those people were like my family. But the week was over and on Sunday I had to take two flights to go to Sakon Nakhon to start the project and I said goodbye a little sad to others volunteers.

So, I follow my adventure alone and I was in airports again but, the second flight was delayed so I arrived in the airport of Sakon Nakhon late and tired but I had two teachers waiting for me. After forty minutes in a car, I arrived in a huge school where children and teachers live here and now, me too. It was an exhausting day and I needed to rest. Next day I started classes.

It was Monday morning and I was really nervous. One teacher came to my home to go together in the canteen to have our breakfast with other teachers. When I met them it was exciting and nice but I felt really observed in all my movements. I wasn't confident with myself.

After breakfast, all the children and teachers were in the playground ding a meeting point and I had to introduce myself in front of them. It was very hard but I did. Then some teachers prepared for me my schedule and that morning I did my first two classes and actually, it was quite good! It was really interesting because in spite of they don't speak English, they could understand the game and they played really well

The following days I learned many things every day. It was (and still is) difficult for me, so many new things in only one week: the language, the culture, the classes, the schedule, the food, the rules, the glances all the time, etc. I need time to understand and adapt myself.