My name is Giulianna and I was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brasil. For 21 years that was the only place I lived and coming to Chiang Mai, Thailand to live here for 1 month was something really huge and new to me. Volunteer work was something that I always had in mind, and when I finally got the chance to do it, Idex offered me the combination between safety and what I was looking for in a social development project.
My choice on coming to Thailand had many reasons, but one of the greatest was the religion. Buddhism always attracted me, so my choice was to go to the Monk Teaching at Mahachulalong University.
Thailand is a huge shock to any foreigner, the language and the culture are just so different, but in the best way possible. Everything in Chiang Mai is just so rich of culture and history, walking in the streets and getting to know the locals is a lovely experience and temples are just breath taking.
I never would have guess that I would learn so much from my students. Not just about Buddhism, but about life, compassion, culture and friendship. When there is a will to learn, no language or difference is a barrier. Mostly by practicing reading and speaking, while helping them get a better English I learned from Thailand history, Buddha and his teachings (the Dhamma) to meditation and discussions about the most recent world news, like human rights and terrorism.
Besides that, living in a house with 10+ different people of different countries is in itself a whole new learning, and a lot of fun! With a great environment that the staff provides, my experience in Chiang Mai was one of the best times in my life. I leave here with my students and my friends a little piece of my heart.