6.30 – 7.00
Students and their leaders woke up to enjoy their breakfast meals. (Hurry up, the opening ceremony is about to come.) They actually do not stay at the same place. Students live at KU Home, while their leaders stay at Sofitel Centara Grand Bangkok Hotel. One may wonder why they must be separated. The sole reason is transparency.
Everyone gathered at Suthum Areekul Auditorium (Golden Jubilee Building). It was a bit far from the students' and leaders' accommodations. Kasetsart University was expansive. We heard that one student from Israel had walked to the auditorium, which took him about 15 minutes. He said that it was his religious practice—no bus-taking on Saturday, just walking.
Everyone was in the auditorium. Prime minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and Jurin Laksanavisit, Minister of Education, presided at our opening ceremony. (There were a lot of newscasters around.) We greeted everyone with a show of traditional Thai Dance. Some people took a nap, so we wondered whether that was because of the show or jet lag.
We went back by bus to the hotel for a welcoming banquet. There were a variety of food and drink for everyone to empty their appetites, including a famous Thai dessert, Mango with Sticky Sweet Rice. (There was a long queue of students!) The atmosphere was also filled with jazzy vibrations in the air by KU Band. Many students were particularly active during the disco-style music session. It was fun—eating while at the same time taking photographs. We went to Bangkok National Museum afterwards.
Students might wonder if we had brought them out for sunbathing. It was hot and sunny. Students visited the National Museum, showcasing Thai history and cultures. Liaison officers became guides for a moment. An exhibition about war elephants drew quite an attention. Everyone took group photos before returning back to their accommodations. Theoretical examination was about to come.