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Update from Thailand :: June 17

After breakfast we loaded our luggage into vehicles and traveled to the Palaung village of Pang Dang Nai, arriving in time for lunch. We enjoyed a traditional Palaung meal and then went on a walking tour of the farm fields. In this region the farmers are using terracing and composting techniques to make the hillsides productive with corn and beans and various fruits including mango. The contrast between the land being managed using practices learned at UHDP and traditional practices is evident here. Traditional practices involve burning so that the land is more barren with plants and trees growing farther apart, whereas UHDP practices promote growing a larger variety of plants and trees together to more fully cover the ground. These techniques make the hillsides greener and the soil richer. Before leaving this village, Bryan engaged in some friendly bartering with one of the local ladies.

We then traveled to the village of Hoi Pong, located in hills near the mountains called Mae Jawn. We hiked up to the highest point in the village to the community guest house where we later slept. From our magnificent view, we could see one of the highest peaks in Thailand called Doi Luang. Before dinner our host Tui took the guys on a search to find machetes. We found two men who were willing to sell their personal machetes. Benjamin bought a machete with a long, thin blade and sharpened flat end for 1000 baht. Luke bought one with a shorter, wider blade with sharpened curved end for 800 baht. Before our evening readings and reflection, we presented Tui with a copy of Phyllis Tickle's The Divine Hours. He then participated with us in our evening devotion time. Later, we enjoyed the stories and seung (three-stringed instrument) playing of Mr. Kaeng, the owner of the guest house in which we slept and a local farmer. We fell asleep under mosquito nets with rain falling on the tin roof.

Two quotes for the day:

"Anything worth anything is worth the risk to do it."  -Sabra

"American toilets--a gift from God!"  -Benjamin


Posted by Kelsey Adams at 8:51 AM
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