Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Boat races

It was Sunday morning; I was enjoying a slow morning, getting some chores done around the house. A few neighbor kids were over coloring and looking at books; very peaceful. And then Eid (I work with Eid) showed up with her family. She invited me to go boating and with her pantomimes it was either canoeing or kayaking. Sounded like an adventure so I said sure, when? Now! So Thai! So I said 5 minutes and quickly got ready.
We drove 45 minutes to the next province and as we approached and I saw the hoards of people I knew I had something wrong. I clearly was not boating. It turned out to be a Long Tail Boat Festival with a snake show, lots of vendors selling stuff and boat races. These festivals are held all over Thailand in September or October when the rivers are full from the rainy season. We watched the snake show for a few minutes, one race for a few seconds and left for lunch which turned out to be 15 minutes away at the house of the girlfriend of one of the guys who went with us. We spent about 4 hours at her house with lots of kids and assorted people and a very long lunch. We took a walk down the street to a neighbor who raises crocodiles for shows and zoos and raises and sells dogs, parrots and porcupines!
We finally left and headed back to the boat races in time to see the winners announced. A typical Thai field trip!

The snake show was a big hit with the cobra eliciting oohs and aahs. Each of those crates had a snake in it.

Each boat represented a different province. They were beautiful boats. These 2 are approaching the finish line.

There were about 100 crocodiles. Who knew there was such a big market.

Baby porcupines are pretty cute!

The jerseys worn by these racers said NO to drugs, alcohol, and smoking.

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