April 27, 2016
Githu, Year 12, Century Park Campus
Usually, I’m incapable of remembering what I had for dinner the previous night. However, despite the six-month time span that’s passed, I can still recall nearly every detail of our Year 12 trip to Thailand. What I had originally thought might be a standard type of trip, turned out to be one of the most remarkable trips I’ve ever been on.
The word “Thailand” has become synonymous with white, sandy beaches, crystal clear blue water, tropical resorts, hammocks tied between palm trees, etcetera, etcetera. Contrary to popular belief, however, you can visit Thailand without stepping foot onto a beach. In fact, the closest we got to “swimming” was splashing around in an icy cold waterfall. We spent both weeks of the trip in the outskirts of Chiang Mai, a culturally rich city in the northern part of Thailand. The Thailand trip was filled with many educational experiences — without losing any of the fun.
In the span of 10 days, we learnt how to zip line (which was great), how to mix and pour cement for an outhouse to serve the needs of a local village, to cook (embarrassingly, a skill that, at the age of 16-17, we all lacked), say “a little cheaper?” in Thai (extremely useful in our night market adventures), and interact with elephants. Things that we had seen only on the pages of our textbooks were suddenly tangible on this trip. We saw the benefits of organic agriculture, experienced first-hand the effects of human presence on an ecosystem, and much more. It was without a doubt one of the more educational trips I’ve ever taken, but somehow was still the most enjoyable, and simply an experience we will never forget.