Ban Chang with James & Lucy

Our sleeper train to Bangkok from Surat Thani Arrived in Pattaya via an overnight sleeper train (see left) and bus where we were picked up by our friends Lucy & James for a week enjoying their hospitality in Ban Chang. We spent the days mostly with Lucy (see next entry for what we got up to) and the weekend in Ko Samet (also see another entry!), but we did also do some other stuff…

A Kratong floating in the Whilst we were with James & Lucy it was the Thai festival of “Loi Kratong” (or “Loy Kratong” depending on how you feel like spelling it today *). From what we understand you make a kratong (floating raft with banana leaves, a candle and 3 incense sticks) and float it out on water (sea, river, pond, paddling pool – whatever is closest). We think it is meant to symbolise having your sins taken away from you, but it’s not all that clear! James’ school was having a big celebration, so we went along and enjoyed the food & dancing – even if we didn’t really have a clue what was going on!

Later, we floated our kratongs in the sea which is a rather lengthy 30-second walk from James & Lucy’s (no, we’re not envious at all!). There were also HUNDREDS of chinese flying lanterns being launched which are so peaceful and beautiful as they float off into the sky and become stars – unfortunately very hard to do justice with a photo so we’ve not uploaded any. The peace was regularly broken by people throwing fire crackers & fireworks – sometimes landing just a few metres away from us. Fireworks here are exciting in a whole new way!

We had a lovely week with James & Lucy and they made us feel very much at home. (Thanks again if you’re reading this!)

* – as an aside – there is no standard way to go from Thai script into Roman script, so one word can be written a whole load of ways. e.g. one hotel we’re staying in is called Mitapap, Mittaphap or Mattapip depending on where you look! It’s pretty much their way of working – there’s no single right way necessarily…

Author: Alex

I am X3JA

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