Arrived Buriram today.
a little info about Buriram,
it is in the north-eastern part (Isaan) of Thailand, bordering Cambodia.
Buriram means The City of Happiness.
It was under the reign of Khmer Empire about a thousand years ago.
Most people here speak Isaan (dialect of the region) and a handful of them speaks Khmer.
My destination for this trip is Ban Kok Muang, a village in Buriram.
My Thai buddy for this trip, Toon and I were really excited because Isaan food is REALLY GOOD and both of us love good food. =D
soon as we arrived Ban Kok Muang, we were brought to attend a really special welcoming ceremony. พิธีบายศรีสู่ขวัญ Bai-sri-su-kwan. The wrist binding ceremony.
we were told that this is a really special ceremony performed only on special occasions like weddings, promotion/graduation, arrival of special guests.
nope. toon and i are not marrying each other today. neither were we promoted (though i hope my bosses read this and get my hint....... )
we were the special guests arriving at this village of 700 families.
okie. let the pictures do the talking.
Village head lighting up candle for the ceremony.
which was then proceeded by prayers of blessings and wrist binding.
we open our palm, facing up.
the village head then brushes outwards (away from you) with the thread.
this is to signify the releasing of bad energy and bad luck.
then he does it in the other direction, brushing inwards.
then the receiver clenches palm into a fist.
this signifies the bringing in of good energy and good luck.
initially i thought it was a male-left hand, female-right hand thing.
but no leh. it does have a different meaning though.
left hand - charisma/popularity
right hand - power/authority
but of course, you can asked to be blessed in both.
we have to wear the cotton thread for at least three days.
and we must not use sharp object eg scissors to remove.
(well most superstitious beliefs are actually based on logic. so yups i believe its for your own safety lah.)
here is Toon receiving her blessing from one of the lovely elders.
it may seem like a simple and straight forward ceremony.
but there was so much love in the words from the elders... my emotions got the better of me and i cried. it was a very touching moment for me.
in fact i was already in tears the moment the village head said the prayers.
this is another strange feeling i cant fathom. i felt the same when i had my first Sak Yant (blessing tattoo) done in a temple.
i was overwhelmed with emotions and i teared.
oh well will save this story for another time.
after the ceremony, we were invited to have dinner together.
GOOD FOOD, PLENTIFUL.
and i tell you!!!!! the long beans!!!!!! i dislike long beans. cuz they usually smell damn cao-cor. but omg these beans are grown by the villagers. organic they said.
its SO GOOD. crunchy and SWEEEEET. i never knew long beans were SWEET.
i am willing to be rabbit for a day for these sweet long beans!
the cotton thread on my left hand accompanies me as i type.
i will be wearing the villagers' blessings with me for a long long time...