Thursday, February 01, 2007

chiangrai 2005 - 22 MAG + Ban Jalae + Ban Huay Khom

[181205] yet another bowl of noodle soup, & the fragrant 夜来香 Telosma cordata that YK & the cat became addicted to sniffing:


a day in the life of an NGO director with Pi Moo....

first to MAG in Ban Huay Khom:


& then to Ban Jalae for a weaving competition:


checked out the hilltribe museum & the Lahu handicrafts on sale - during our 2004 visit we were too busy recording info on the village to really appreciate this place. bought a Lahu bag from Nasa:


while YK discovered that the other lady selling handicrafts at the museum is Jamu's wife =)

Pi Moo on stage as VIP, watching the Lahu dance performance:


somehow Lahu dance seems far more complicated than Akha dance. last year in Ban Yafu we were totally lost trying to follow the Lahu...but in Ban Apa we had no problem & danced countless rounds with the Akha around the bonfire, while managing to keep our distance from the village se4 lang2 at the same time ;)


& then we spotted some not-very-Lahu-looking 'Lahu' & a familiar face - e 2004 SMU team leader was back leading a new team of SMU 'Lahu':


spot the real Lahu in the above photo =P

weaving competition:


Jamu's wife helping out:


Jatee + Jamu:


we'd never met Jatee nor Jamu's wife before. & yesterday we'd met them at Chiangrai bus station & gone shopping together at the Chiangrai wholesale market...without realising who they were =P

& then it was off to a Karen village for some Christmas celebration, but everyone was attending a church service. this village is particularly strict & frowns on drinking - something quite hard to imagine for hilltribe people. amazed by the community's discipline!

on to Ban Huay Khom school for sports day - at the very field where we watched the elephant show for the school's fundraising a year ago:


locals were divided into orange & white teams & competed in tug-of-war, some race that involved carrying of bamboo poles, volleyball, table tennis, petanque, sepak takraw, tug-of-war, etc.


soccer is taken seriously in Thai schools ;)


after lunch in the staffroom with some important people (teachers? headmaster? village head? no idea!), yet another ride in the back of the truck (lost count of how many times we'd climbed in & jumped out this morning) back to the Karen village, but their church service was still on. back to MAG:


where we joined in some activity organised by Pi Jambii to educate hilltribe youths on the problem of human trafficking. there was a gift exchange, & YK & the cat ended up with 6 little packets of chocolate flavoured soyabean milk. saved it for the Ban Apa kids we'd be meeting later. a familiar face among the youths - Akor, the Apa Youth Group leader (as of 2007 he has joined the team), who updated us - Chatrii has left to study in Phayao, Aya is now working in Bangkok, etc. spotted some guy wearing Pi Jambii's signature green & blue 'Chiang Kham hospital' windbreaker ;)

also got to meet Pi Somsak who was busy with Edwin & the Republic Poly team finishing up their project. Edwin had chanced upon the A.W.E.! 2004 exhibition back in Singapore & we'd met with him & his students a few months ago to share our experience & about the conditions in the villages & trails.

& in the midst of running between all these activities, we'd been snatching bits of time to discuss with Pi Moo how best to distribute e donations....hugged her before we left, for we'd not have a chance to meet again for a long time.

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