Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

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Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by Big Boy » Thu Sep 29, 2016 8:47 am

We made our annual pilgrimage out to this school run by the Thai Border Police. This is a very rural area of Thailand on the border with Burma.

I didn't travel in convoy this time, I made my own way, picking up friends en-route. With no appeal this year, my car was travelling light.
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First stop en-route was the public toilet (about half way), which is at the end of the area where elephants never seem to cross the road :cry: . I wouldn't normally mention a comfort break, but this one was exceptional. When men use the urinals in this facility, they have a lovely view over a small lake. The lake this year had turned into a puddle. There were a couple of dogs living where the centre of the lake used to be. I'd always imagined Hua Hin was staying dry, but Pala-U would have been receiving it's usual rainfall.
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Dogs at the centre of the lake
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We were first to arrive at the school at about 09:30. The offroad experience was the worst (some would say best :D ) driving I had experienced here. Much of the time I was forced to drive on the wrong side of the road. Fortunately this is not a busy road, and dust was not too much of a problem this time. My trustee Ranger was more than a match for the conditions.

We offloaded the truck
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Treats
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and as nobody else had arrived, went for a wander around the school's garden. The well stocked garden was looking very prim and proper, and will provide food for the coming months. While we were there, the kids were clearing land on which they were going to grow dragon fruit.
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Entrance to the gardens
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Entrance to the gardens
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Creating a dragon fruit plantation
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Creating a dragon fruit plantation
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Creating a dragon fruit plantation
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Battery hens
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Battery hens
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Looks like a load of lettuce. This was actually a pond with farmed catfish living below.
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Well manicured vegetable plots
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Well manicured vegetable plots
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Well manicured vegetable plots
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The kids at this school have very little, and we have initiated several appeals in the past to provide them with basics such as shoes and socks. Although we asked if they needed anything this time, the answer was thank you, but no thank you. The kids had obviously benefitted from another benefactor this year because most were turned out in purple shirts and black trousers - they looked quite smart.

One thing many kids would have benefitted from, and I wish they'd asked was socks again. There are a few photos.
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Socks
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Socks
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Socks
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Socks
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Socks
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Socks
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Socks
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I did inspect the shoes, and they were still looking quite good.
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Shoes
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Our neighbours also club together to make sure the kids have a hearty meal, This time it was chicken and noodles, with plenty spare for second and third helpings. The preparation to feed 250 people is always quite amazing.
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Cut that chicken
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Getting the pots warm
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Preparation of noodles/spices
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Chicken and congealed blood (yuk) ready to add to the pot.
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As the kids start to arrive, the have to wash their hands in a bowl of water - the first kiddie in gets the clean water :D
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Washing hands
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Washing hands
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It's then all hands on deck to prepare each plate
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prepare each plate
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To feed the hungry kids, who wait so patiently
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hungry kids, who wait so patiently
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And then the food is served
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food is served
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food is served
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food is served
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Then the bit the kids were all waiting for - treat time. Every kiddie was given an ice cream and a bag of goodies.
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Every kiddie was given an ice cream and a bag of goodies. The first couple were too impatient to wait for a bag.
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Every kiddie was given an ice cream and a bag of goodies.
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Every kiddie was given an ice cream and a bag of goodies.
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Every kiddie was given an ice cream and a bag of goodies.
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Every kiddie was given an ice cream and a bag of goodies. Serving ice cream
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Every kiddie was given an ice cream and a bag of goodies. Serving ice cream
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Every kiddie was given an ice cream and a bag of goodies.
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LOL - the 2nd sitting had to wait ages for this little kiddie to finish.
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The second sitting was the bigger kids, and they formed an orderly queue, and served themselves.
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formed an orderly queue
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served themselves
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They all sat very still and silent until given the order to start, which was the head girl leading them through the Thai equivalent of grace.
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They all sat very still and silent
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They all sat very still and silent
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They all sat very still and silent
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head girl leading them through the Thai equivalent of grace
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Again, the 2nd sitting ended with ice cream and treats.

As always, this was a very humbling experience, and the gratitude on the kids faces for an ice cream, a couple of biscuits and a couple of packets of crisps was something you had to be there to see. Photographs can't describe it. The experience was worth every bump on that horrible road and the resultant aches and pains this morning.
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Re: Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by aragon » Thu Sep 29, 2016 9:59 am

Good for you BB; an excellent cause and some great photos too. :thumb:
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Re: Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by migrant » Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:08 am

Great job and pictures!
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Re: Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by caller » Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:33 am

Good for you BB and everyone else involved - well done!

How about having a socks appeal in any case, you can never have too many socks!
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Re: Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by Big Boy » Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:59 am

I thought about it, but they definitely declined when we asked. Apart from socks the kids were well turned out - yes, they were dirty, but we'd all be dirty if we had to walk those 'roads' every day for a couple of hours. I guess the people in charge are too proud to keep asking.

Mind you, if I had known beforehand, I would definitely have spent on socks rather than 7-11 type crap, which, of course, the kids love. Think back a couple of weeks to when you were young. If you were offered a pair of socks or a goody bag, what would you have chosen :D ?

Of course, it isn't too late, but I'll wait to see if there's any further reaction. I only photographed the bad socks, and I would guesstimate it was only 1/3 of the school that needed them.
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Re: Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by huahinjim » Thu Sep 29, 2016 12:47 pm

Well done BB & all involved.

Wont be long before the other 2/3rds need sock replacements. There will be plenty willing to contribute if you have another appeal :-)

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Re: Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by Takiap » Thu Sep 29, 2016 12:52 pm

Good on you BB.

:cheers:
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Re: Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by Phyton » Thu Sep 29, 2016 4:26 pm

My respect Big Boy.
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Re: Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by Dannie Boy » Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:09 pm

It begins with F and ends in C, but no swear words.........................
FANTASTIC!!!

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Re: Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by Big Boy » Fri Sep 30, 2016 7:04 am

Believe me guys, I get as much pleasure out of visiting the school as the kids get from this mini Christmas. I might be aches and pains the day after, but it is well worth it. No problem whatsoever, and its the kids that do all the work. I just do the drive, and spend a little cash. The payback is fantastic.
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Re: Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by Bluesky » Fri Sep 30, 2016 12:07 pm

Most has already been said, but a top effort by yourself and others involved. Really good photos and a great example of philanthropy.

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Re: Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by Dan1 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 3:12 pm

Well done BB.

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Re: Pala-U Border Police School Visit 2016

Post by MDMK » Fri Sep 30, 2016 3:21 pm

I read the shoe appeal thread from last year just the other day. It's the most touching thing I have read on the net in a long long time. Well done to all involved.

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