Expatmama in Thailand: De Aankomst

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Hanneke Langschmidt (47) verhuisde een jaar geleden met man en kinderen naar het heerlijk warme Thailand. Enorm leuk, maar ook super spannend en behoorlijk wennen – vooral voor de jongste. Ze schreef voor ons blogs over hun Grote Expat Avontuur. Dit is blog 2: De Aankomst.

En daar staan wij dan… op het vliegveld van Bangkok, met ons hele hebben en houden in zes koffers gepropt. We lopen naar buiten en voelen de warmte op ons neerdalen. De zweetdruppeltjes staan op onze voorhoofden en onze T-shirts kleven vast aan onze huid. Wij komen aan in het Thaise regenseizoen. Dit betekent dat de luchtvochtigheid enorm hoog is. Snel vluchten wij een taxi in. Lang leve de airco!

Omdat mijn man hier al een halfjaar eerder was dan de kinderen en ik, zijn we hier tussentijds al eens op vakantie geweest. Achteraf een goede keuze. De kinderen mochten een dag meedraaien op hun nieuwe (internationale) school, en mijn man en ik hebben een aantal huizen kunnen bekijken.

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Omdat de afstanden in Bangkok enorm zijn en het verkeer in het centrum van Bangkok werkelijk een chaos, wilden wij dicht bij de school van de kinderen wonen. Onze keus is gevallen op een een wit sprookjeshuis in een buitenwijk van Bangkok, BangNa. Hier staan vijftig huizen bijeen, met in het midden een gemeenschappelijk zwembad. Het is vijf minuten lopen naar de school van de kinderen. Toen wij hier voor de eerste keer kwamen werden mijn man en ik overspoeld door een Disney-gevoel. Je verwacht ieder moment dat Minnie en Mickey Mouse uit de huizen komen lopen. Grote witte huizen met idyllische torentjes. Ja, deze compound ging het worden. Fantasia Villa 2!

‘We komen hier als gezin meer tot elkaar’

En nu staan wij, drie maanden later, weer voor Fantasia Villa 2. Dit keer plus zes koffers en twee kinderen. We merken meteen dat we superbehulpzame buren hebben. Iedereen komt ons een hand geven en vragen of we hulp nodig hebben. Ja, dat hebben we! Omdat alles nieuw is, hebben wij veel vragen die beantwoord moeten worden door onze nieuwe buren.

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De eerste weken zijn we erg moe. Niet vreemd gezien alles wat wij hebben meegemaakt: de beslissing, daaropvolgend het afscheid nemen en de reis… Om vervolgens in een land aan te komen dat zó anders is dan Nederland. Alles is vreemd: het klimaat, de geluiden en de geuren. We moeten soms met de mond en neus dicht door bepaalde straten lopen, omdat de vuilniszakken niet op tijd worden opgehaald. En dan hebben we het nog niet gehad over de voorbijrazende auto’s, en het oppassen voor de hobbels en gaten in de stoep, die ervoor zorgen dat wij elke dag athletiekoefeningen doen.

Maar wát een luxe en een genot is het om na deze oefeningen de zwemkleding aan te doen en een plons in het zwembad te kunnen nemen. Om alle tijd van de wereld te hebben om dit samen met je kinderen te kunnen ondernemen. Om, op twee uurtjes rijden, mooie idyllische resorts aan het strand te kunnen bezoeken. We hebben hier meer tijd voor elkaar en doen alles in een relaxed tempo. We zijn gekomen met slechts zes koffers en hebben een hoop moeten achterlaten, maar we krijgen er een hoop voor terug.

Meer lezen? Volg Hanneke op 4MamaMagazine! Benieuwd naar het vorige blog: De Verhuizing, klik hier! Of lees hier meteen blog 3: De Inburgering. Neem ook eens een kijkje op haar blog: hannblogt.com

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