10.11.2006 33 °C
Dada returned from a brief sojourn to BKK last night with a bag full of toys and a Norwegian in tow. Rita is an optomotrist here to volunteer with the Unite for Sight NGO campaign, which tours around the impoverished areas here offering free eyecare and glasses. Had a great time with Musti last week experimenting with glasses that afforded my cheeks as much vision as my eyes. Sadly we didn't manage to take any pictures for laughing. Musti left yesterday havig completed building the new goat house. Now I have nobody to bully - come back, Musti! ; ) He's gone to meditate in silence for a month at a Thai temple. "ANICHA" - live in the moment!
Rita was going to have the whole other side of the volunteer house to herself, but after spotting the fresh rat poo she decided to stay in my room. He's quite a cute rat really, brown and fluffy, and certainly in good health, having eaten most of Lindsay's vitamin tablets yesterday.
This morning brought sad news. Reports have surfaced amongst volunteer workers here(not for the first time) of a Thai man sexually abusing the children at his orphanage, just down the road from Baan Dada. It's a very tricky situation as no-one can really provide evidence (he chucked out the older boys who tried to stand up to him). Even worse, he's a man of huge influence and standing the community, and should he be challenged he'll be sure to do his damnedest to drag down the other children's homes with him and make trouble. Most homes out here are run by non-thai volunteers for non-thai children, making for pretty shaky political foundations in a country where so many burmese refugees are barely allowed to make a living for themselves. If he chose to he could cause huge problems for Dada and others like him
Sat with Anuwat on my knee this morning looking at photos on the laptop. He takes great delight in seeing himself and those he knows caught on camera, and makes an excited squeal whilst pointing frantically from the screen to himself. He does the same if I'm reading to him, paying scant attention to the story and just seeking out pictures of robots and aeroplanes, which he then stakes a claim upon, pointing from them to himself and announcing "Anuwat, anuwat!"
There's pics of him and some of the other boys here:
This new addition to the home is Chinamu. She was so shy at first but now she trots over to sit on my lap and gives me the cheekiest grin. The rest of the time she has a troubled scowl upon her face. Her mother is here too, with another daughter. No idea what happened to the father.Chinamu had a fight with another toddler, Male'eh, when Male'eh stole her shoes! For quite a while Male'eh was the only baby around and so lapped up all the attention from volunteers - now she's a bit of a tantrum thrower and doesn't like to share her spot in the limelight with the newcomers. She peed on the kitchen table this morning, after screaming for her mother for quite a while. I managed to catch her just as she was about t fall off onto the concrete floor, and got a spattering in the process. All in a day's work : )