Monday 14 April 2008

Songkran 2008

Songkran 2008 was fun!

In my post there will be some pictures so you can get an idea what's it all about.

Songkran is the Thai New Year and is celebrated throughout Thailand.

We planned to go to the Pagoda overlooking Chaweng, of which I posted in February. There was a ceremony scheduled early mornings and it would also be a good moment to give an update. However, the moment we planned to leave the house my father in law called and asked us to get to the Chaweng Police station, since a relatives car was involved in an accident with a foreigner on a motorbike.

Law in Thailand works slightly different on some levels than in the rest of the world. In Europe, when you get caught whilst drinking and driving, you're in trouble, same as in Thailand. If you get involved in an accident whilst drunk and driving, problems only get bigger and that's where Thailand differs. The police or the 'not guilty' party accepts payment of the damage done and everybody goes home, home free so to speak, even the drunk motorbike driver. In this case there was damage of around 1.000,- Euros and it took about 8 hours for the foreigner to arrange for the money, meaning that I spent 5 hours at the Police station, before I left to bring the children and Mother in law home. It almost took me an hour to get from Chaweng to our house, and almost an hour and a half after I left, the money was on the table, I was just about to return to take up my translation duties again.

The young bloke who caused the accident was free to leave, instead of facing Thai jail and paying a lot more after he went through the justice system.

This meant that after spending all morning at the police station, I was at last free to go and enjoy the party!

My first stop was in Ban Rak, where friends and staff from the dive shop I work for was having a good time. Above shows what the effects of water and talcum powder has on you

One of the many pick up trucks driving around the island with a trigger happy crowd in the back of the pick up!

Next stop was Chaweng beach road and it was a mad house! A big party was going on in front of Soi Green Mango, and if you look carefully, a new use for melons has been put effectively in use.

The party in full swing!

Hope to see you next year!


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