Autobiography of a Novice Monk in Luang Prabang
As part of their regular English classes some of our Novice Monk students have written an autobiography of their experiences and future goals. These are a wonderful insight into local lives in Laos and student’s motivations.
I am a novice. I was born in the countryside called Huang Lor village,Muang Ngoi district,Luang Prabang province Lao P.D.R. I am 20 years old and I live at a temple.
I am going to tell you about my story life.
My family is very big.There are nineteen people in my family.I have 8 brothers and 2 younger sisters.
My two brothers are married.My oldest brother has three children,two daughters and a son.
My third brother has a daughter. They live together the same house.
Most people work in the farms and breed animals. In the past I liked to go the farm with my mother and take care of my younger brothers and sisters.I also went to cut the fire wood in the forests with my mother and brothers.
Sometimes when my parents went to work on the farm,I have to stay at home and look after my younger brothers and sisters and carry the water for cooking milk for them.I also helped my brothers to feed our dogs,chicken and pigs.
When I was a child, I was quite naughty and fat.I loved to play games with my friends very much.We played hide and seek every evening as there was no electricity it was very good to hide from each other.
In my free time I liked to climb up to the mountains to watch the sunset and listen to the birds singing around me everyday.I also liked to go fishing.
I first went to school, when I was nine years old.I did not know how to write and read.My teacher tried to help me.
In the evening my father taught me and my brothers how to read and write all the alphabets in lao language.
In Nong Khiaw town, because there was not a grade four in Huang Lor village. I studied in Nong Khiaw for three years.
In my free time I liked playing football with my friends and we also went swimming in the Nam Ou river together. I was very happy, because they are very kind and nice.
After I got the primary school certificate there, I contacted to my cousin who was a novice in Luang Prabang province. He told me about the life as a novice. I was very interested in that. Then I asked my parents and brothers to live the temple.
In 2009 I became a novice in Luang Prabang town where my cousin lived. I learned how to chant and meditate with other novices. They told me the rules and what to do everyday.
In the end of 2010 I stared to learn English in Mekong English Center and I studied there for two and half years. Then I got the certificate.
I get up at 4:00 to worship to the Buddha for about an hour and do meditation. Then I clean around the temple and go for alms giving. At 7:00 I have breakfast with other novices and monks. After that I go to school. It starts at 8:00 and finish 4:00.This year I go to school in the morning, because the school is very small and classes are not enough for every students.
In the afternoon I walk to the library to learn English with the GVI volunteer teacher. I am very happy to study with them, because they are very nice, nice and smart teachers.
In the evening I chant to the Buddha with other novices and sometimes we do meditation.
This year it is my last year at monk high school. After school I need to get scholarship to continue to study at university in Laos or another countries.
I want to be a businessman, because I think a businessman can earn a lot of money to help my parents and all my brother and sisters.
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