Apr 16, 2008

Walking with the Zombies (Ian's Diary)

More from my brother Ian's several month long trip to Thailand... he crazy slash i'm jealous!

3:41am Tuesday, Apr 15
The world has gone insane. Nobody is acting normally, they're all totally soaked, drunk, hungover, or drinking. They are covered in paste, yes, paste. I saw one of them mixing the paste, like paste you would buy at a hardware store. Its 3 parts paste to one part water. Basically, paste.

The Songkran festival for the new year was OVER in Phuket, but i made the 12 hour overnight bus ride to Bangkok in time for the last day of this soaking festival. I'm back in the heart of Falang Land, but it's also the heart of the festival, of one of the many hearts. There are people walking almost like in a proccession, with the water guns, and the bottled water, spraying everybody! Hmm, its kinda funny to see someone load a bottle of water into a water gun. I'm glad its bottled water! At least its cleaner than canal water!

Almost all of the shops are closed up, and the people either fled the city, or are on the streets, cooking food, dressing up and dancing, going to watch the marching band! haha. Hmmm. And they're all wearing flower shirts, collared shirts with bright colors. When there is a group of people wearing brightly colored shirts, you KNOW something big is going on.

Before i left my hostel, which i wisely chose at 6 am, when noone was out, amidst what looked like a warfield. The streets covered in paste, broken down police barricades, umbrellas tipped over, trash all over the streets, and all the shops closed down. They all have what to us would be a garage door on the ground floor which houses their business. All of these metal doors are down, or most anyway, and graffiti or some on paste is on them, PASTE I SAY!

I'm leaving this place, and it seems like the festival is sending me off. It's been a wild trip, elephants, bears, tigers, and the like. TREKKING off into the WOODS. I probably motorbiked for well over 2000 kilometers, and only one little slow speed dirt crash! A month in Laos, eating mystery meat soup, living the dream, and then losing it! Loie, and the motorcycle man, and the dudes Pad Thai! Chiang Mai with all its ludicrous drug deals gone bad, and bowling!

For one thing I'm surprised that I haven't been arrested. The military is everywhere, checking all the time. The guitar is probably my main arrest defense. That thing has been so many different places! I bought her in Odoum Xai, in the North of Laos. She has since been dipped in the mekong river, had beer poured into her, opened at least 15 beers, had a cigarette put out on, thrown into the bay of bengal, filled with sand on the shores of the andaman coast, strapped face first for over 500 kilometers to another of its kind, road guitar! Its been keying, kicked, dragged on roads at high speeds, sat on, used as an axe, played! Played by unnumerable thai people, and me, and seth.

As i leave this internet cafe i'll walk back with the zombies, back with the Thai People and their smiles and schemes. I just hope my shoes will dry out for the 30 hour journey i have!

Ian, pre-New Years, looking just like our dad (sans mustache and beard). Carl, is that you?

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Thanks for sharing your thoughts and opinions! Makes this much more interesting.