Day nine of the Emory University Women's Tennis team's trip to Thailand, written by freshman Defne Olcay.
Today was a long day for the Eagles. Starting the day with a breakfast consisting of delicious local fruits prepared by our hosts Cynda and Alan, the Eagles had an early morning practice with a mesmerizing view of the mountains of Chiang Mai. Afterwards, we got lunch at 'Kwan's Kitchen' when we realized that we were starting to get homesick and most of us ended up ordering Western food instead of Thai food for the first time! Using the local red trucks called "songthaews" for transportation, we went to a viewpoint on our way to the temple. Seeing newly born puppies on the way motivated the Eagles for the 360-step entrance of the temple 'Wat Doi Suthep' we headed to afterwards. In the temple, Elaine, Sasha and Emma got blessed by the monk. Elaine was told that for one's blessing to count one must be blessed odd number of times (such as 1,3,5) and therefore she was getting blessed for the third time to make sure. However, we were not sure about the certainty of this information so Emma and Sasha was blessed for a second time accidentally making their blessings cancel each other.
Wandering around the local shops around the temple waiting to get on the red truck again to go the Hash House Harriers Jungle Run this time, the Eagles got ready for their third workout. We joined a hash run, which consisted of a scavenger hunt to find the right way back to the starting point through the jungle. Knowing that we should take care of one another and to make sure that we didn't get lost in the woods, we all stayed with each other, motivating one another to complete the run as fast as possible. Figuring out the symbols used for guidance, the direction to go and trying to survive a 5-mile run with the motivation to win the race kicking in, the Eagles did a great job and proved themselves to the hash run members as guests. Participating in the traditional post-run circle of the hash group, we had another team bonding experience where we shared our thoughts on what we had experienced on our run. The Eagles were exhausted and ready to eat dinner, which was the last stop for the day.