Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Normally, my 6 kids, armed with intimidating “high powered” waterguns, loose on the streets with permission to engage fire, is not a force to be reckoned with.
But my posse met their match last week when this typically polite and respectful culture celebrated Thai New Year with Songkran (Water Festival).
It is like NOTHING you’ve ever seen before….
Its an all out war where pedestrians carrying groceries, elderly people, babies and even those “dressed for work” are not exempt from the “water snipers” looking for their next victim.
“If you plan to go out, prepare to get wet” we were told. (iPhone in ziplock bag – check!)
Basically, there is nowhere you are safe from being doused!
There is a 546 year difference between our Gregorian calendar and The Thai’s Buddhist calendar. So…..we just celebrated the New Year 2556 last week
(Back-To-The-Future time warp!!)
In celebration, the natives “wash” away the sins and bad karma of the old year as they ring in the new year and welcome the onset of Monsoon season.
Bangkok turned into a full-blown whitewater playground for 3 days and my kids loved it.
There are truck loads people with coolers full of water that they throw on the next car or tuk-tuk. Children stand on the side of the road pelting motorcyclists with water balloons. We witnessed grown men, shouldering neon waterguns, picking “fights” with complete strangers. Buckets of water rain down on passers by from high-rise apartments. Vats of ice-water line the sidewalks in front of street shops allowing passersby to “fill up” and target their next victim.
And its crazy FUN!
After going out the first day and having a family attack me whilst carrying bags of groceries home, I decided it best NOT to take the expensive Nikon camera out to document the fun on the streets. But….here is a peek at the mayhem of our neighborhood waterfight (from safely behind a hedge:).