It's Ramadan and Sports Week here in Thailand, and this girl is ready to run in her track meet. The temperatures are in the sweltering upper nineties, and even though her Grandmother is fasting from food and drink, including water, from sunrise to sunset, she is here to cheer her on.
About 40% of the population in Krabi, Thailand is Muslim, and the percentages increase in the provinces further south. In a country where 95% of the population is Buddhist, I wasn't expecting to learn about Ramadan and Islamic culture when accepting my assignment to Peace Corps Thailand, until I was placed in Southern Thailand. Here the mosques are as present as the temples and the sounds of monks chanting in one village turns to the sound of Islamic daily prayers in the next. I thought going into Peace Corps and living in another country alone would enhance my perspective on culture and diversity, and now I have the added bonus of witnessing it within my community.