Today we spent our second day in the community near the kindergarten. In the morning, we split into two groups. One group painted the concrete planters we built yesterday and then planted small flower bushes in them, with the cutest little kids as our helpers, while the other group painted murals on one of the walls of the playground area. After we were done painting (finally!), it was such a rewarding experience to see how much the little kids enjoyed their colorful recess area. After all our hard work, it was necessary to quench our thirst, and what better way than trying traditional Thai iced tea! We all agreed that it is way better than iced tea we find in America. During our lunch break, we had fried chicken (the group favorite), stir fried vegetables and a really good, exotic fruit called mangosteen. In the afternoon, some of the local elders taught us how to make the type of flower garland that they give to each other as a sign of respect. After a few other crafts, we moved back over to the new playground area where community held a special Thai ceremony to welcome us. The leader of the community gave us a blessing, wishing us happiness, health and wealth. It was so touching when the elders tied bracelets around each of our wrists (kind of like what happens in the Indian holiday, Rakhi). After that, we danced with the kids for a long time. Although it was tiring, the amount of fun we had was worth it. It took the kids a while to open up to us, but when they did, they were so cute and energetic. What made this day so special was the strong sense of community we got to experience. It was so nice to see how everyone, of all ages, come together to celebrate with such joy and appreciation.