This morning I went to the local Thai market with a new volunteer. It was one of those mornings. To begin with, I had a seven year old boy with cerebral palsy, who is also deaf and blind, on my back piggy back style. He is very small so not heavy but he cannot hold on too well given the cerebral palsy. He also likes to decide to hit himself in the head when irritated as a way to communicate and if that doesn't work then he likes to bite his hand or pinch himself. The two of us made made quite a site. Little ol' blonde me walking through the market with a little brown boy who keeps hitting and biting himself precariously perched on back.
Next, add the new volunteer who is taking care of two year old Bekah. The volunteer arrived about a week ago. On Monday I learned that she had never changed a diaper before. I also learned that she planned to be working at Bamboo School (a home for children) for the next year. I immediately thought she was crazy. Who commits to working at a children's home without ever having changed a diaper before? Apparently, she does. So its been a learning experience for her so far, and for me who has become her guide to all things children, Bamboo School, and Thailand. As you can imagine, she was a bit lost and overwhelmed as to what to do at an open air market. It wasn't Walmart. That's for sure. There were live eels in buckets, whole dead frogs for the taking, fish paste and chili, machetes for chopping bamboo, sarongs for bathing in a river, and rice to eat.
So the two whities (me and the new volunteer) and the two little ones tried to make our way through the crowded market, while carrying all our new goodies, and then look for even more good stuff like clothes hangers, food storage bins, and mirrors. Absolute necessities! Plus, limes and peanuts are a must for adding a little flavor and protein. I was trying to complete a transaction for said clothes hangers etc... with a local vendor (with the little boy on my back and bags slinging from my arm) when I notice everyone looking at us. This was not new. I get a lot of looks when I am about, but I noticed something was different. I looked around, and down, and then realized that not only had little Bekah peed her pants, but had also proceeded to pooh in front of everyone in the market. She left a nice little something on the ground and on her pants, on her shoes, and on her feet. The new volunteer was appalled. I thought it was funny and inconvenient given the circumstances.
Bless the new volunteer though as she had toilet paper in her bag. It came in handy for cleaning up the little girl who poohed in the middle of the market and for picking up the finished (ah hum) byproduct. So, that was the icing on the cake and the sight to see at the market today. The two whities, the little boy who hits himself, and the little girl who poohs in the market.
Coming soon is a brief dissertation on the highly attractive qualities that exist between Thai goats and old green trucks.