The tradition is rooted in the idea that the water is a symbol of cleansing, getting rid of the bad for the year ahead so the wetter you are, the more cleansed of ‘the bad’ you are. Yep, in their eyes they are doing you a great favour.
One of the main areas for this celebration was just down the road from our place so off we went to explore and experience being in the thick of it all. We were completely prepared to get wet but I don’t think either of us realised just how wet we really would be getting. We started out strategically crossing the roads to avoid people who were looking particularly fierce, then stopping to wait for people to walk in front of us with the idea that we’d be avoiding the bulk of the water but in the end it was useless. We had to accept and embrace the water and were soon in hysterics at how cunning these people could be, even when we were the victims.
We’ve had to hire a scooter here to get around. Doing our weekly food shop has had us feeling like regular Thais’ with numerous shopping bags hanging from both
handles. However, not satisfied with this we borrowed our landlords’ bike that has a side car on it as this seems to be a hugely popular means of transporting larger goods around the place. I jumped in the side car while Michael did the driving, doing a pretty good job of keeping me out of the gutter. We got some serious stares from the locals, a little perplexed as I don’t think they’re used to seeing ‘farangs’ traveling like this, especially on the way back with our load of shopping bags. It was quite a laugh and I felt rather ridiculous but it certainly was a new experience not to mention convenient.
Our favourite thing about being here is the sunsets! We’ve been lapping up the laid backness of living close to the beach, when it hasn’t been pouring down with rain – it’s the start of the rainy season which has sometimes ruined our plans of outings off the island. Rain though makes for great skies and most days we get down to the beach for a long walk whilst witnessing some of the most stunning sunsets we’ve seen. It’s a simple thing but probably our favourite about being here as they are simply THAT BEAUTIFUL. Stopping off for fresh young coconut on the way home and life seems pretty idyllic.
So whilst we travel around we are making some notes and comparisons of places we travel to, noting what we appreciate and don’t. Living in Chiang Mai for almost 4 months we can now reflect on things we miss about the place. Monks about town being a regular part of ones day is strangely something we miss seeing and of course the beauty and easy access to the temples. Phuket doesn’t seem to have the same feel of spirituality about it but we do find an element of it in the magical sunsets. The organic vegetable market is sadly missed by me and for me again, the ease of getting around as I don’t know how to ride a scooter….that may well have to be rectified.