Kai’s fantastic 1st Christmas


Photo by Kai Mongkhonkham

Pawaran Kai Mongkhonkham

Editor’s Note: Pawaran “Kai” Mongkhonkham is a junior foreign exchange student from Thailand who recently watched his first American Christmas. The following article reflects the impact that experience had on him. Please follow Kai’s articles this year as he explores American culture from a fresh perspective.

Christmas songs on the radio station in the car from the end of November are still stuck in my head like the last splash of ketchup at the bottom of the bottle. The white lights from the backyard bother my eyes. “Christmas lights in November, great…” I thought that day.

Let me tell you something; I have never seen Christmas like this before, because I’m not from around here. I’m from a far, far away land across the ocean. Where I’m from, the main religion is Buddhism. They do not celebrate Christmas (but some people are Christian, so they do).

“You should go to shopping mall, Cookies,” said my friend (my nickname is Cookies). He gave me a ride to Target. Okay Christmas stuff for sale in November. Seriously?  This came to my mind after I saw a section of Christmas stuff. He told me it has actually been here since after Halloween. After Halloween? That’s almost two months before Christmas!

Last week, my host family got a real Christmas tree from a Christmas tree farm that you have to go cut yourself. It was epic… I really enjoyed when I put ornaments on the tree.

And the best part before Christmas for me is the holiday stroll! I usually spend my time with video games on late Friday nights. But not that day! I choose to throw away my game controllers and see interesting things around the town. And free hot chocolate and cookies! YOLO!

I wish my people celebrated Christmas like this in Thailand. The celebration that makes people crazy for two months… awesome! I really love America!