Here in Thailand, they celebrate most things .... they don't really need an excuse to drink dance and make merry .... my kind of place. I wandered down to Central World to see the Christmas lights which were really quite jolly, but the crowds were horrendous. Above the main interchange outside of the shopping centre was a huge sign ... 'Happy New Year 2012' .... The last sign that I saw here was 'Peaceful Demonstrators not Terrorists' .... and that was just before the shootings started back in May 2010
On Christmas Day, I set out on the scooter for a traditional Christmas dinner .... 'traditional' as in here. Chang Wattanna, shrimps and noodles ..... absolutely delicious
For New Year, it was onto a bus with my friend Noo and a six hour journey up to her home town of Phitsanulok. I really like this place, a vibrant city that describes itself as the Indochina Junction .. but I'm not sure why. I love the night markets, the constant festivals, the slow walk of life and the lack of pissed European tourists.
After a night in Phitsanulok, it was off to the home village, Ban Noen Kum a few kilometres from the interestingly named town of Pee Chit.
The New Year countdown started early ..... probably a few days before I arrived. From Bangkok I'd brought fireworks, lots of fireworks. Proper fireworks that fill the night sky and burst the eardrums. In Europe, such pyrotechnics would cost a small fortune, but here they're cheap. They're rudely cheap in fact and 'Safety' seems not to be a problem .... all were ignited using a zippo ... but NOT by me .. the entire bundle of high explosives had cost me less than $10 in Bangkok's China Town ..... so during the ignition stage I was hiding with the kids behind a sturdy brick wall.
Tick Tock Tick Tock .... as midnight arrived, the kum-loy lanterns were released and the night sky filled with an amazing orange light and then it was Karaoke .. so it wasn't all good news.