From Thighland to Thailand

February 19, 2012

Thailand 4.3

Filed under: Uncategorized — markchinmd @ 3:01 pm

Thailand 4.3: Love is Patient

February 19, 2012- Sunday

By now it’s Sunday, Thai time and we have arrived at our destination.  Last trip I “Journaled” while Jennifer “blogged”.  I am going to try to do a hybridized version, a Blogal if you will.  For those who just want the facts I’ll precede the detailed version with the cliff note version.  Those of you who want to get an idea then you can just get the bullet points. Those of you who want to feel what we feel can proceed to the lengthy, exhaustive, somewhat boring version but I would just like to say that it helps me to remember what we did when I try to recall our trip in my advancing age.  At least read the cliff notes so that when we converse when we come back home our feelings won’t get hurt if you ask “Haven’t seen you for awhile; you’ve been out of town?”

First the FAQs:

  • Why are we doing what were doing? We are suppose to serve. The great commission: Matthew     Go into the world and spread the news to all nations.
  • Is this an evangelical Mission or Medical mission? Primarily it’s a Medical mission to offer services to the needy but we will represent ourselves in a Christian manner hoping for opportunities to spread the good news.
  • Who are we? Medical Team International, First Chinese Baptist Church.
  • How often do you go? Every two years, Goal every year some type of mission trip.
  • Where are we going? Throughout Chiang rai, chiang mai, Golden Triangle near Laos border in northern Thailand
  • Who are we treating: Akha Villagers, Laotians, prisoners, school children, various other hillside tribal villagers.
  • How long are we going for? Gone 16 days.
  • Who’s going? Pastor  Danny Jack, Arlean Jack, RN, Sir Richard Bruce, USMC, Bill Ho, DDS, Gail Ho, RN, Lester Lowe, DDS, Larry Lowe, DDS, Lynelle Win, DH, Akira Tajiri, OD, Dennis Chiinn, OD, Allyson Farrell, OD, Diane Lee, OD, David Chow, PharmD, Dorothy Dunn-Chow, Jack Patton, MD, Mark Patton, Doug Owyang, MD, Kane Kuo, MD, Bob Wu, MD, Cindy Wu, RN, Andy alejo, RN, Ming Chong, RN, Mark Chin, MD, Lena Chin, MRS., Steven Chin. 25 in all.
  • This team is comprised of many veterans from FCBC, Tacoma, Washington, and Southern California.  Those that are new to this trip are Lena Chin, Steven Chin, Mark Patton, Dorothy Dunn-Chow, Allyson Farrell, and Diana Lee.  As the team advances in years the talents and skills need to be passed on. Drs. Farrell and Lee fulfill this hope for the future.  Allyson is Dr. Tajiri’s daughter and Diana is Gilbert/Dolores lee’s daughter.  They will be using the optical equipment invented and designed by Dr. Tajiri so that prescription glasses can be made in as quick as 15 minutes.  Lena, Mark Patton and Dorothy will be general helpers and work in whatever capacity they can as their Warm presence and efforts will be greatly appreciated.  Steven majored in visual arts and will be filming and preparing a documentary for use at home and for the American Baptist Churches
  • What is their age range?  24-85 years old.
  • What services are you providing? Medical Care, Minor Surgical care, drugs and vitamins, Dental care (Cleaning, hygiene, and restoration), Vision Care and Prescription glasses.
  • How many patient encounters do you expect? Over 1000-1500 Patients.
  • Who’s Paying? Self Funded by volunteers , Team members, and by FCBC mission fund.
  • Is it dangerous? Actually, yes.  But you can get a 2nd opinion.
  • Why is Mark Chin writing, again?? No one else volunteered.
  • Why are the entries so long?  I’m wordy, have diarrhea of the mouth, and there’s nothing else to do.
  • Do I have to read anymore of this? No, you can stop here.  This is not required reading.  But if you want to sympathize or empathize with us, or cry, laugh, get nauseated, scared, freaked out, feel our joy or disappointment and our humiliation, our passion, and be there in the action…Read on and stay tuned.

Two luggage missing!!

No party bus.

"Are we there yet?"

A boy and his toy! George Lucas Jr. in the making...

Now as my lovely wife would ask: What did you do, who did you see, what was it like?

  • Long hours, traveled 32 hours door-to-door from FCBC to Bangkok, to chiang Rai to golden Triangle inn.
  • Luka Chermue, founder of Thai Akha Ministry foundation and our host along with his entourage (Gi and Joshua) met us at Chiang Rai Airport with warm Embraces and enduring smiles.  They transported us with their school bus and 4 x 4’s to Golden Triangle Inn and then treated us to a nice lunch.  It feels like we were just there.
  • Unload, unpack, and unwind.
  • Shopped at the day market and Central plaza.  Definitely need more time to shop.
  • Lena, Steven, Diane and Allyson experienced their first tuk- tuk ride.
  • I found some great mango and sticky rice, two portions, didn’t have to share much.  I felt guilty… nah, not really.
  • Bob and cindy wu arrived separately to join the team.  Feels like family together again.  Missed them dearly.
  • We went to a nearby restaurant with our team and Luka’s team and their families.  About 35 people gathered to remember Luka’s father, Jo Tsa, who past away in 2010.  Jo Tsa was the first Akha villager who became a Christian and essentially had to leave his village due to his change in religion.  He took his family along with four other families and formed what is now known as the huisan Akha Village. It was a touching moment to share his memories through a slide show which included the last days of his life.
  • Jack Patton graciously introduced the team members and remarked that “It’s like coming home and seeing old family again.”
  • Pastor Jack, our spiritual leader thanked luka and his vision that he has with his ministry and how important it was to this team to be part of that ministry.
  • We Met Yonie Cramer, RN from texas who will be joining us during our stay.  She worked at the akha village medical clinic from 1998-2000 and this was a welcoming home for her.  We are glad she can join us with her experience.
  • We briefly celebrated Bill ho’s, Jack Patton’s, Lynelle’s, and Cindy’s Birthday and had some cake.  We tried to spank them but they ran too fast and we’re too tired.
  • A brief trip to the night bazaar yielded empty bags.  Yes, we really must have been tired!

Memorializing grandpa Jo Tsa

Luka, Mrs. Chermue and Dad Jo Tsa Chermue

Pastor recognizing and thanking Luka for his ministry

Kane Kuo's team shirts given to Luka

Happy Birthday to us!

First Chinese Baptist Church commits a generous portion of their budget towards mission trips.  Donations and fund raisers such as Food and fun support this cause.  Donations are always welcome, anytime. This is our fourth trip to Thailand as a medical Team (the youth group went last year to teach and help build and paint buildings).  All who go are volunteers offering their skills and talent to what has developed into an efficient and effective team that collaborates to see as many people and in as many cities that we can be at in our relatively short time frame.

Kane Kuo donated custom designed team shirts for luka’s and our team to wear with the Bible verse Luke 10:2  written in Thai:

“The harvest is plentiful but the laborers are few.”

God is calling you…Mark

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