Sunday, November 17, 2013

Loi Krathong Bang Saen Style!

Loi Krathong is a Thai festival where they pay their respect to the water spirits. It is mainly celebrated in the north of Thailand but people do celebrate it in other places. It is in two parts and is held during a full moon. First you make or buy a KRATHONG which you will put into a river (or ocean) and your are offering it to the water spirits. Some people offer a clipping of their hair and nail, and it is also common to place some money in your KRATHONG. The money is seen as an offering, and the hair and nail is a symbol of letting go of your negative thoughts. When you release your KRATHONG you are saying goodbye to your regrets from the past year. The second part of the festival is Yi Peng and this is where you "make a wish" as you let a paper lantern fly in the sky. I hope I have said all this right - this is how I remember it from my googling and from what I was told before the weekend by some of the Thai staff at school.

Unfortunately, we could not make it up to Chiang Mai for this wonderful weekend. Chiang Mai is amazing for Yi Peng and all the posts on FB made us extremely jealous. In the spirit of staying local we made our way to Bang Saen beach to meet up with some other OEG people teaching in the heart of Chonburi. Bang Saen had plenty of KRATHONGS for sale and lanterns too. After the sun went down and the tide turned we let our regrets go and we sent our new wishes to the sky. The night ended with lots of fireworks going of right over our heads and a long search to find a songthaew to take us home. My camera could not capture how cool it was (nothing on the north Thailand size) but I tried my best. Bang Saen was fun, I had ROTI for dinner (oh how I miss Sri Lanka), and it sure was nice to be away from Amata for an afternoon. Bang Saen is not really a beach you would like to swim in but it is a cool little beach town with universities, and apparently there is a pretty cool street called Walking Street where you can grab dinner and go out.
Krathongs for sale.
Dinner anyone?
Alex and her firework.
Alex and Nichole

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