Sawatdi Pi Mai

by jeannabauer

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Just so we’re clear: chronology has been thrown out the window. Sorry. While there is much to tell you about weeks (& months!) past – these days my brain is still in a Songkran haze.

Songkran the 4 day Thai new year celebration or – the best holiday ever. A traditional time to start anew, cleanse & pay respect Buddha, monks, elders & family with a blessing & sprinkling of water… turned 4 day, country-wide water fight.

Foreigners & locals alike who wish not to participate are told to stock up on supplies, close the door & find a good book. Water guns. Buckets. Hoses. Kids. Grannies. Moat water. Ice water. No one. No place. Is spared.

& it’s incredible.

Falling during the peak of hot season – the evolution from sprinkle to soak down is really no surprise. Chiang Mai, because it’s endless water source – the moat – is a Songkran hotspot. Streets lined with vendors (water guns, phone protecting purses, food & sunglasses), stages & tireless children. Roads jammed with the brave (or stupid) on motorbikes & overflowing trucks with people making it rain ice water on any/all passer-bys.

Soaked head to toe from sunup to sundown for 4 days & it didn’t get old. Everyone involved was genuinely cheerful & respectful. The city may have faced a severe shortage of dry clothing, but no such shortage of laugher & smiles.

Sawatdi Pi Mai (Happy New Year) to all! & a special thanks to Aileen Rhodes for her awesome images!

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