Monday, December 14, 2009

Happy Birthday, Happy Birthday

His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej turned 82 last Saturday, December 5th. Ban Phe turned into a huge festival and I got to walk in a parade!

All of the employees of my school turned up in pink polo shirts with the royal insignia. If I had known that this was an option


you can bet that I would have hastily created a sequined vest or something with a little pizazz. Pink polo shirts stretched along the vast length of Ban Phe's main drag as what must have been most of the population of Ban Phe marched 3km or so to the giant stage which had been constructed a few days before in anticipation of the king's birthday.

Watch them disappear into the horizon.

Once we arrived, there was a lengthy ceremony wherein each group who had marched in the parade sent up three representatives to give gifts to the king.

That's Neung, Bert and Ditt!

Then this happened

and there was tasty seafood for all. The festival lasted for six days, and there were concerts and talent shows on the big stage the following nights and a big market to go with the carnival. Ban Phe is finally back to normal now and I don't know how I'll be able to carry on.

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