July 2021 Update

    The year is already half over, and the dreary presence of Covid looms larger and larger in the Kingdom. The children don’t complain much, but for others who graduated, got a job and then lost the job, thanks to Covid shutting down the country, it can be very distressing, and a little humiliating.

    School just opened (two weeks ago, and then closed again because of Covid, for a week or so). We have a few cases up here, mainly from people fleeing the Bangkok area, and coming home with the virus. Folks up here still don’t have the vaccine, and are not real tolerant when somebody brings the virus, especially the Delta variant, into the area. But our staff had the opportunity to get the jab today. Some went to town to get the injection yesterday. A few of them got sick with G.I. issues, high fever, and sore arms. Word got around, and 28 were to get their shots today, but only 6 went in. The rest heard about the problems those who had been the day before were suffering from, so they chickened out! As for me, no jab yet. I want to see my doctor first. I have differing opinions on whether to get the vaccine or not. Kate, our nurse, Father James, and Brother Keng also got their jab. Keng is OK today, but the other two have bad headaches and high fever and are bed ridden. Thankfully all are fine after 24 hours.

    And for the monthly weather report. What started out looking like an old time monsoon season, soon descended into extremely hot and humid days with no rain, and none predicted for the immediate future. We have about half of our rice fields planted, and it doesn’t look good. It has been like this for the last 4-5 years, and the weather is said not to improve for a very long time.

    This past month, we took in a few more babies. The parents have AIDS, and wanted to go to Bangkok to look for work; not an easy task in the days of Covid. One baby boy, whose young  mother is taking drugs, came to us, and at first, the baby was too quiet and unresponsive, but after withdrawal, began to furiously swig bottle after bottle of milk, and now appears to be a normal little dude. But time will tell. We also accepted a little 7 year old wisp of a girl, who was brutally raped by her stepfather. She cried bitterly the first day, but now has made friends, and is going to school like everyone else. I told the cops who brought her in, that they should invest in a rusty hacksaw and  put it to good use in cases like this. Covid seems to bring out the worst in people, so I am sure we will be picking up more young girls along the way.

    The Prime Minister announced that the country might open up in October. That would be super, if it actually happens. There are no jobs available, and I called back young men (only a few who don’t have jobs) and young ladies who were all laid off. We gave them four months to find jobs, but there isn’t any. So, I told them all to come back, so we wouldn’t have to pay for their food, travel and lodging. They can stay here until the country opens up and jobs are available. Thanks to a generous donor, we can pay them a small salary for their work, and they have free lodging and food.

    I hope you are well and safe. God bless you!

Father Mike


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