Wow. I can't believe that it is over. My 10 weeks in Thailand. My 7 weeks with FORRU. It's a little mind-bending, really. It seems like only yesterday that I was walking to my first day of work, but so much has happened since then.
The last coupld of weeks went by so quickly, but I feel like they were the most productive, rewarding, and educational. Most recently (a few days ago), the TEAN interns at FORRU presented comprehensively on our seven weeks – my presentation (and this post) is most easily broken up into Office Work, Field Work, and Lab Work.
Around the office for the past few weeks, most of the hubbub has centered around the FORRU website. It has been the job of the TEAN interns to revamp the website, giving specific parts of it much-needed facelifts. I worked with Kyra – while she worked on the website-proper, I worked behind the scenes, scanning in recent FORRU publications to be uploaded. Two comic books, two pamphlets, and two seed-care books later, that part was finished!
FORRU’s fieldwork lens has been focused upon Tham Pha Thai National Park: A few weeks ago, we visited and joined the planting of over 5000 trees. Earlier this week, FORRU took an over-night trip to the very same plot, to monitor the growth progress of the trees. Three teams of two went out, each tasked with recording the height, crown width, and diameter of 500 saplings. We…didn’t quite finish. A late arrival, two spats of rain, and a broiler of a day pushed us to nearly 350 per group. Oops. We got some good data, though!
And finally, lab work. Oh, boy. The last two weeks were eye-opening, in terms of the experiment. We went to work every single day to take results and keep it healthy. All that, though, and half of it had still managed to completely fail within five days. Generally unwanted patterns and a disastrous fungal infection rendered our results inconclusive. The other half, though, has been hobbling along. It has been kept on life support for at least the next few weeks, in the care of one of FORRU’s new interns. I have faith that he’ll treat it well, as we did.
I suppose that is all, then. It feels weird to be leaving Thailand, and the new city I've come to appreciate so much. I'm sure I'll be back as soon as the opportunity arises!