First Day at IUCN

Today was my second day in Bangkok, but that doesn’t mean I was relaxing and enjoying the warm Bangkok weather. My summer internship at IUCN actually started today! It is an exciting time and here is how it went.

I woke up at 7am and got washed up and ready for the first day of my internship. This was exciting for me because this would be my first actual internship experience! After having some breakfast, the sky started to turn grey and almost immediately, it started to rain cats and dogs. I was going to take the Khlong Boat as it would be the fastest and most convenient way of reaching work, but with rain that heavy, I would not able to do it. My mom asked me if she should give me a ride to work, but I refused as I saw the rain started to die down. But as I was about to leave, the rain started again so I had to ask my mom for a ride again.

Jumping into the car, there was a lot of traffic in the soi. This was very unfortunate and knowing Bangkok traffic, it would take me forever to get to work, so I got out of the car and walked to the Khlong Boat station instead, just as I originally planned. At the station, I waited about 20 minutes for a boat to come by. Boats traveling from west to east was very rare as most commuters go into the city – east to west. Boats traveling that way are so frequent, they came about once every 3 minutes. Time was of an essence here because 8:30 was fast approaching and I was going to be late! And being late to the first day of work is never a good sign.

I arrived at my destination boat station at 8:30 exactly. I was already late. I quickly hopped onto a motorbike and it raced through the traffic and before I know it, I made it to the office. The guard did not let me in at first, but I told him I had a meeting inside so he let me go. At the reception, there was nobody there. The office looked quite empty to be honest. I waited at the reception, as I had no idea where to go. But thankfully, my boss/ supervisor, Anshuman, came to pick me up.

The office was empty. I was the second person to get there (after Anshuman), so being a bit late did not make me feel that bad. Anshuman showed me my work desk. I am very happy that I got a workdesk of my own and my own working space. Everything is real now!

After settling in, I was given my first task. I was to update the donor matrix with more information about various donors. This was important information as IUCN is not a government organization so almost all of its funding comes from donations from various foundations or GOs. There were more than 300 organizations on that list and I knew it would take me a while to get it done.

Around 10, Anshuman gave me a tour of the office and introduced me to various colleges. The IUCN office is very different to other offices I have been to. First of all, it is not in an office building, instead it is a standalone residence house that is converted into an office building. The house was very large and has a lot of different areas and floors. My office is on the second floor of the main house.

At around 12, Anshuman took me out to lunch with a few colleagues and some other interns. We went to the Chicken Lady with is great for me because it is authentic thai street food, something that I love. We each ordered a chicken and then had some other salads made. All in all it was a great meal.

In the afternoon, I continued to work on the donors list. The day finally ended for me when I decided to head home at around 6pm. It was a very interesting day and I got to experience what office like was. Maybe after this internship is over, I would be able to decide whether or not I belong in an office.

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