It was so hard to come back. I really like Thailand. The people have such big smiles and are so friendly. The kids are so photogenic:
We had a great trip. It was so neat to get our students out of Russia, especially the one Russian who hadn't ever been out of Russia. It was a bit of a culture shock for them and a class/spoiled shock for me: "I'm spending the summer in Paris and my mommy's giving me a gold card for it!" "Um, Ms. S, I've never flown economy class before..." "AAAAHHHH, there's a bug in my bathtub!!!"
However, over all the kids were great. They hardly whined at all about the hot days 36+ C and about being out hiking, biking or rafting in that heat. It was really a fun trip. I ate mango, papaya and or pineapple every day. I introduced the kids to the pleasure of banana chocolate roti. Unfortunately durian was not in season. I managed to find just a bit on the last day in Chiang Mai. And I got kissed by an elephant:
When elephants kiss they suck, it feels really funny! We also went on an hour elephant ride. It's terrifying. The whole time I felt like I would tip off!
The company we worked with, the Maekok River Valley Resort was great. We had two wonderful, knowledgeable guides who were a ton of fun. I hope that I get to host the trip next year.