Visakha Bucha Day & Happy Birthday & VOTE?

Visakha Bucha Day

This article was originally posted on WomenLearnThai.com.

  • Get your FREE Thailand Cheat Sheet ​by entering your email below. The ​Sheet, based on ​our experience with living and working in ​Thailand for 10+ years, shows you how to ​save time and money and ​gives you the tools the thrive in Thailand.

Visakha Bucha Day & Happy Birthday & VOTE?…

There’s a lot going on today… We all know it’s Visakha Bucha Day but it’s also my birthday (yeah)… and… it’s the day voting opens for the Top 100 Language Lovers 2011 competition.

So, yeah! Let the voting begin.

Happy Visakha Bucha Day…

Officially, 17 May 2011 marks 2,600 years since Buddha’s enlightenment. To celebrate the anniversary, on the 8th of May 12,600 monks in orange and goodness knows how many Buddhists in white got together in front of Central in Bangkok. I was there. It was a massive event. And I was rightfully impressed.

Alms Giving to 12,600 Monks in Bangkok (thai-blogs.com – no longer online): Visakha Bucha Day is one of the most important days in the Buddhist calendar. It takes place every year on the full moon of the sixth lunar month. Three important events happened on this day. These were the birth, enlightenment and the death of the Lord Buddha. Buddhists make merit on this day by going to the temple to offer food to monks and to listen to sermons.

Richard Barrow showed up at 5:30 in the morning, putting me to shame. I didn’t roll up until 7am and ran right into a sea of white. Not orange.

Visakha Bucha Day

Advertisement

Passing along the rows of white, each sitting by their stash, I also came across street hawkers and merit making birds at the ready.

Visakha Bucha Day

Then I walked past people crammed into available spaces on the sidelines.

Visakha Bucha Day

As well as young lads patiently waiting the morning out.

Visakha Bucha Day

Finally, after about ten minutes of dodging the worshipers in white, I hit orange.

Visakha Bucha Day

Lots of orange.

Visakha Bucha Day

I don’t know what hour the monks arrived but by the time I rolled up they were rightfully zonked.

Visakha Bucha Day

Some were animated during the speeches, while others did a bit of pot cleaning.

Visakha Bucha Day

There was one TiT moment. See that pedestrian walkover? The one with the half naked model behind it? Photographers were walking up there to take advantage of the prime photo taking spot of the morning. When I went to do the same I was stopped.

Waggling my camera in protest I was told “Male photographers only”. WHY? Says I. “Women cannot be higher than the monks.”

I mentioned this to a Thai friend. He scoffed. Said there is no such rule in Buddhism.

So TiT strikes once again.

Visakha Bucha Day

Were you wondering how comfortable those seats would be? I guess not much!

Visakha Bucha Day

Now here’s a monk after my own heart. He’s parked right at the back where he can fiddle with his earphones undisturbed.

Visakha Bucha Day

To snap a photo from as high as I could I walked to the very back of the monks, climbed up to and then across the Skytrain walkway. Did you notice the signs keeping step with the sitting monks? The ones that say “Women for Women”? Gotta love it.

Visakha Bucha Day

The sea of orange was amazing.

Visakha Bucha Day

It was all amazing (but apologies, once again, my video skills are still total cacca).

Visakha Bucha Day, 17 May 2011, is a one off deal for Buddhists and if you are missing it, that’s it. Finish. So if you are in Thailand and this is your thing, then please get your butts away from the computer and get out there. Or vote. There’s always voting.

Comments are closed.