Saaaaaaaaaaaaaawatdi Piiiiiiii Maaaaaaaiiiiiiiiiiiiii
(or if Jack don't talk Thai: Happy New Year!!!!!!!!!!)
Originally, Songkran was a time to cleanse images (statues) of Buddha by gently pouring water over them. It was believed that this would bring good luck and prosperity for the New Year. Even better, one could collect the Buddha bath water and gently pour it on the shoulders of family and friends giving them good fortune for the upcoming year. As is so often the case, it was reasoned that if a gentle pour on the shoulder brought some good luck, a massive soaking must be bring even more luck. And so, Songkran evolved into the wildest water fight in all the world, with everyone, and I mean everyone, receiving countless blessings and heaps of good luck.
|No one is safe when a Meshkov has a full bucket|
|Monks were an especially popular target. |
The bright orange robe does not make for good camouflage.
|Even (well-built) ladyboys joined in the fun|
|He got me right in the eye. |
But even if my eyes were closed tight (he was definitely throwing moat water) Clemy managed to get his pic.
|Young girls riding around the moat|
|This grandma wandered up to Jesse politely saying,"excuse me, excuse me, OK, OK"|
as she dumped the full bucket of ice water down her back.
Within the first five minutes of Songkran we were hooked. Wearing our motorcycle helmets we spent all day soaking others and getting soaked, with brief intermissions for the outstanding Chiang Mai street food and massages. And we could feel all the blessings and good luck we received; it was five days of child-like joy and fun and an amazing way to end our first visit to Thailand.
|And to end off each day, an hour long street massage, for $4.|
|Huge, celebrating crowds fill the streets|
|Jesse dukes it out with some local girls|
|They may have been young (and in a superman costume) but they were deadly good shots.|
|Me, Sharira, Poncho, and a new friend in a blue wig|
|In some cases the friendliness was unexpected!|
|And that was water was COLD!|
|But everyone could have a good laugh about it in the end (or I was still in shock)|
|Maggie managed to get a hairwash instead of a bucket of ice-water down her pants|
|She got a better deal than me|
|Somehow Jesse got neither a bucket down the pants nor a hairwash.|
|The self-christened Team Aquablast|
|Just another bucket to the head|
No one is safe when a Meshkov has a full bucket
|And another bucket|
|And another bucket|
It was undoubtedly the simplest, but most effective, weapon
| A group photo SNEAK ATTACK.|
The superb photographers (and baristas) at Hopf Coffee kept re-positioning us until they could capture the moment just right
|The streets lined with water fighters|
|We even managed to make it to the actual Songkran parade|
|It was pretty, and surprisingly dry.|
|These little guys stayed dry in their ponchos, despite their willingness to get me wet|
|This little girl perfectly captured the snickering fun of the Songkran water fight|