During the weekdays breakfast is served after the kids take the bus to school. It’s a leisurely meal. Volunteers stumble in around 8 Thai time but not me. I’m putting coffee on waiting to see what Mame made for me this morning. We take the hour and talk about the day ahead, what needs to be done and what unexpected chores were added to our list from the night before. This morning we were stationed in the strawberry fields, laying hay. Linds played DJ, channeling her brother Michael, and took requests. Sue and Judy wanted the Beatles, Van Morrison and Mick Jagger. Right up our ally! The chore was done with more singing and laughter. The mud was thick and ankle deep. Linds mentioned looking out for slugs, I mentioned looking out for snakes as the slugs seemed less frightening. During one of our tours upon arrival, Dada mentioned snakes, and his one and only tip, they only bite when stepped on. Thanks Dada, I’ll be sure to remember that!
Since Judy and Sue arrived our mandatory “nap time” an hour after lunch to keep us cool and out of the heat was instead filled with jokes and stories. We laughed knowing this is going to be us when we’re their age.
Thursday is a busy day with two markets in two different towns, so we spent the afternoon preparing with our littlest helpers. Going to the market is one of my favorite chores because it reminds me a lot of the Gypsy Giver pop up shops at home.
Dinner might be my favorite meal at the home. Kids are scattered all over the home and farm, doing chores and homework while relaxing from a day at school. The dinner bell rings around 6 Thai time and we all come together. Before eating, Dada goes over news and updates, all in Thai so I don’t really understand. Tonight he explained that instead of their regular English lesson they were to all meet in the library for a Gypsy Giver presentation. After the kids are all updated, which is usually about 15 minutes, they go into prayer in Thai, of course.
Do all the good you can. By all the means you can. In all the ways you can. In all the places you can. At all the times you can. To all the people you can. As long as ever you can.
Our presentation/English lesson was a little bit geography and a lot of karma. We used a projector to show them a map of the USA, pictures of our home Scarlet, and places we’ve helped along the way. After spending nearly a week here it’s clear the kids care for each other, help their community, and spread good karma in everything they do. It’s heartwarming to know they are growing up learning the importance of love and doing good things in everything they do. After 30 long minutes, we opened up the floor to a Q&A and kids asked us genuine questions about fulfilling dreams, where we get donations, and how many people are in our group. Most were shocked when they learned it was just the two of us. I think the most difficult question was if our Gypsy Giver program will ever end. Happily, I explained to them that no matter where we land, if it’s for the night, time spent at Baan Dada in Thailand, or setting down roots of our own, we will always, always help each other, our community, and our earth.