Songkran - From Korat to Bangkok


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Published: April 16th 2009
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Chock Chai near KoratChock Chai near KoratChock Chai near Korat

The start of a big day

Songkran - 3 days of fun and chaos in Thailand



Amidst the political turmoil of Thailand, none of which is mentioned in the rural areas except for a glimpse of the news on TV, I boarded a truck full of kids and adults from the village near Chock Chai about three hours by bus north-east of Bangkok. It is Songkran water festival time and "Happy New Year" for the Thais.

I stood in the middle of the crowded truck next to a large barrel of water and everyone was armed with water shooting guns and anything suitable for throwing water. Soon we were passing large groups of locals dancing in the hot midday sun to the sounds of the upbeat Isaan music, all smiling and water was spraying everywhere. It did bring a momentary tear to my eye to see the pure joy of the Thai people on this special holiday.

We passed so many people, everyone was out in the street, old and young and we drove for about 20 kilometres to a large main road which was filled with thousands of revellers. Part of the Songkran fun is to paint a watery powder on to
Chock ChaiChock ChaiChock Chai

Near our village
the face of any passer by. For the three days of Songkran you must accept being sprayed with water and stop if anyone wants to touch your face to apply the harmless paste. It feels like tribal warfare and I think the Thais and foriegners revert to their basic instincts with this being a great time to get close to any stranger that appeals as you pass them on the road.

It is amazing with so many people interacting that there is so little trouble and I only saw one minor skirmash amongst the throngs of people. We moved slowly along the road and it was so hot that I took a break inside the cabin of the truck between dancing or walking in the street amidst the calls of "look Farang, Farang (foreigner)" which meant another cue for my face to be painted.

On the second day of Songkran I returned to Bangkok. There was at least 80,000 people in Silom Road which is an amazing for it's crowd control by the people themselves. There was little or no trouble that I could see but it was a huge crush and could be very dangerous if there was any panic. The party went all night every night and after three days of Songkran fun I slept very well. It is quiet on the streets today and the cleanup is in full swing. Many people hate Songkran and hide indoors or leave the country but if you get the chance you should experience it at least once. This is my second Songkran festival and I will be back for more.

This is my only entry for this visit.

Chock Dee !!! Good Luck !!!




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Songkran Country StyleSongkran Country Style
Songkran Country Style

Over 200 have died on the roads during Songkran mainly on motor cycles. Road Safety is a minor consideration here.
Songkran Country StyleSongkran Country Style
Songkran Country Style

A cool break in the air conditioning
Songkran sound systemSongkran sound system
Songkran sound system

I will need a hearing test soon, the music is always very loud
Songkran Country StyleSongkran Country Style
Songkran Country Style

The bad boys of the village always like me at their party
BangkokBangkok
Bangkok

The poorest area of Silom/Sathorn was the most fun. I was drenched here with the friendly locals.
BangkokBangkok
Bangkok

Sathorn area near Silom
My baby !! Er NO heheMy baby !! Er NO hehe
My baby !! Er NO hehe

They were outside my hotel, I am so popular !!!
BangkokBangkok
Bangkok

The mute comunitty gather near my hotel
BangkokBangkok
Bangkok

Silom Road. This is just the pavement. It was like this across the entire road for a kilometre.
BangkokBangkok
Bangkok

BTS station Sala Daeng
Bangkok Bangkok
Bangkok

It is close contact in the streets
Songkran is overSongkran is over
Songkran is over

Sorry to scare you !!! In my hotel at 3 am and I left early, enough is enough hehe !!!
The day after SongkranThe day after Songkran
The day after Songkran

The cleanup gang at work. If you saw it the night before they have done an amazing job.


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