What's 'Thai' to a Thai child, asked to look from a foreigner's eyes

The kids at the Japanese school were invited to submit drawings to go into a social studies textbook, about Thailand. Engineer loves drawing, so he set about the task...but was stumped.
E: "What kind of drawing am I supposed to do?"
Me: "Anything about Thai society - it's a social studies book, right?"
E: "OK. But what's Thai?"
As a foreigner, it's perfectly easy to point out what's unique about Thailand, at least at a 9-year-old visible level. Elephants! Tuk tuks! Temples! The wai!

But I had forgotten that if you were born and raised here, and without having had too many opportunities to see other countries including Japan, it's not so easy to figure out what are the things you can only see in Thailand.

Photo credit: Forum.linvoyage.com,
Phuket@photographer.net via Flickr
We also talked about fruits yesterday: "What fruits are Thai?", asked Engineer and Tigerlily. "Oranges? Apples? Strawberries?"

Well...more like pomelo, durian, rose apple, rambutan, mangosteen...but how are my kids to know?

For now, we talked quickly through what makes Bangkok unique, and voila! Engineer ended up with a picture worthy of a tourist-oriented postcard :)

Guess that's Bangkok viewed from my eyes, rendered by the Thai boy...


Popular Posts