Alex Khan, 127 YinD
“Cock a doodle doooOOO…COCK a DOODLE DOOOO”
It’s roughly 5:00 AM and I am already sweating profusely. I roll over and think to myself “10 more minutes Alex…10 more minutes”. My eyes close and I daze off for a bit, only to be woken again.
5:30 AM: “Lo Lo… suwat dee krap wan niiii……..(Insert whatever the village leader says every morning at 5:30 am over the loudspeaker)
I wake up again covered in sweat and now force myself to the bathroom. I grab the bowl and begin to pour water all over my body. There is instant satisfaction. Suddenly I am awake and happy. Thailand also seems manageable today. Biking 6k in the 104 degree weather and being chased by dogs doesn’t seem that bad after all.
Thailand is in the beginning stages of summer and word around town is that this year is one for the record books. Jai yen yen my friends, with the right mind set and cooling techniques it’s all good.
Technique number one, and most important in my book, is to stay hydrated. Yes I know so cliche but true. Drink at least 3 big bottles of water a day to keep the med unit away. It may seem like a lot but once you start sweating your body will lose a lot of water and things can get tricky. We all know water is so healthy for you blah blah blah but here are some benefits you may not know about:
1) Water helps keep your skin looking nice and healthy.
2) Water aids in digestion and helps keep you “regular”. As PCV’s we all know the importance of staying “regular”.
3) Water can boost your immune system as well. Its not uncommon for PCV’s to catch a cold or feel under the weather, and nothing is worse than traveling long hours with fluids coming out of all ends.
Technique number two is to take bucket showers throughout the day. I probably take anywhere between 2-5 a day depending on availability and time. Soap is not needed in fact I recommend you don’t use it every time or your skin will dry out. “So Alex you want me to travel home 2-5 times a day to shower?” No silly you will find that often schools have showers or places for you to rinse off. Take advantage of these and rinse off when you can. Its a mood/game changer.
Technique number three would be to remain calm and make the best of your situation. Some days no matter what you do, the heat is just going to be unbearable. Heat can and will make you more irritable and possibly result in illogical thinking. I can still remember days thinking, “OMG, this is how it ends. I am going to DIE” but I promise you guys and gals its possible! SUE SUE (Hang in there) as the Thais like to say. Before you know it you will be heating up water in the AM to shower with and looking for a sweatshirt. Don’t worry though….that wont last long either! Thailand is full of endless surprises that you will look back on and laugh at throughout your service. So take it day by day and cherish each moment.
Find this article and many more at Alex’s personal blog https://alexkhan6289.wordpress.com/