Thursday, December 17, 1998

Week Two in Bangkok

Hello Again Dear Friends

Well, another week in sunny and warm (but cold to the locals at a mere 75 degrees F) Thailand, and another week to get more settled in to my surroundings and establish friendships.


I am learning, and the task mutates into more information and research the more I read and study, but all the better. I actually am quite intrigued by a certain book I am reading. "Burma: Insurgency and the politics of ethnicity" is a book recommended to catch up on the background of some of the refugees we deal with on a daily basis. I am slowly beginning to understand the all too complicated history of Burma through te book, and I am learning more about Aung San Suu Kyi, the democracy activist in Burma who recieved worldwide recognition during the 1988 protests and recieved the Nobel Peace Prize. Lots of heavy stuff, and defintely intensely interesting reading. So the research angle of it all is cool

Next week, my predecessor arrives to handover the rest of the job to me, and then I should be smooth sailing in the Information Office. I plan on an extensive visit to Cambodia to find out more about the JRS field operations and programs there - PnomPenh, Siem Riep, Sisophon, and Batangbong. That trip takes place around mid-January. Then February 3rd through the 9th I take a trip to meet organizations in the Phillipines, mainly Manilla. A lot on my plate in the coming months, but I like the travel.

I have been getting around Bangkok rather well despite my inability to speak any Thai. I would like to learn Thai, but classes are sort of expensive and my schedule may preclude me from being able to do so right off the bat. I believe my language lessons will have to come about as trial by fire. As for the company I keep, it's fascinating to reflect on the diversity of the people I come in to contact with on a daily basis. Human rights activists, student demonstrators in exile, lawyers, religous clergy, and staff workers paint the colors of my current life. The weeks to come hold the promise of meeting more interesting people, and the adventures continue from there.


The Illinois connection wraps up this week with my family all moved and settled in Pennsylvania sometime this weekend.


Dan Millbauer is doing a little visiting at home from Japan as well as Greg Craber (who leaves Las Vegas for Washingtom State for Christmas), Larry Gillick is still going strong in New York - I had a chance to instant message a little session with him and it was good to keep up with him.


Matt Wrobel is recording another CD with the Dodecaphonics in Boston, and then is heading home for Christmas break. Carrie Williams is in to her fifth and final year at Olivet, and has a wedding on the horizon (I believe during the same time as the release of Star Wars: ThePhantom Menace, which is a crime. There should be a national holiday in honor of the release of this incredibly awesome film! - Just kidding Carrie!). Her incredible excitement into marriage is evident in her e-mails, and kanester and Vader International wish Carrie best wishes. I know that Rob Thiry is working at Wolohan's (soonto be Stock Lumber) in Dekalb, but know nothing more than that because he sees fit to never e-mail (hinthint)


This area is for those who wish to get some messages out to those on the Kanestergram. E-mail me withyour message, and I indiscriminatly will post on the next Kanestergram.


On January 24th, all movie theaters will be required to ship back to Lucasfilm the prequel trailer that was released in early November. This is due to the fact that Lucasfilm would like to keep a lid and strict control over all aspects of the coming Prequel Trilogy AND because after January 24th, there will be a 4 and a half minute trailer to replace the existing one. Cool stuff, helping build the excitement to May21st. is one of thebest sites on the Internet for information on the coming prequel. Check it out.

Well, so concludes another Kanestergram. I wouldn't mind hearing from you, so I hope that you don't mind sending some mail.

Until Then,Peace and Best Wishes,

Happy Holidays


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