Turning 21 in Thailand is exciting, but at the same time it is not. Unfortunately, I don’t get to be with my family and friends from home and turning 21 doesn’t actually mean anything in Thailand since you are legal to drink alcohol at the age of 20.
On the bright side, my friends here have been quite wonderful in accommodating the fact that I am not home. The evening of my birthday, my roommate and couple of close friends surprised me with a birthday cake and then the party started. My American friends in the program obviously took me out for drinks, started early, ended early. Go figure. Hahaha! The following couple of days were spent with close Thai friends to a nearby temple, delicious meals meetings, and just spending a great amount of time with glorious company. I loved it! Even though, it wasn’t quite what I expected.
Being away from home is definitely hard; however, I learned to appreciate the relationships I have created here. Relationships truly make the world a better place to live in. I am so, so grateful for the friendships I have made here. They are just AWESOME. Being here, I have learned to appreciate my family and friends at home, but I also realize that my time here is very short; therefore, I need to take advantage of my time here with the new friends I have made.
There have been a lot of times here that I was left alone, mainly by choice. The solidarity made me appreciate people because even though, being alone does get lonely, I found how important relationships are to me. Now my new personal goal is to make an effort towards the relationships that are important to me and before my time is done here, I am hoping to have some strong friendships that will carry on with me even after I leave this place of discovery.