Category Archives: Traditions

Loi Krathong Buzzkill in Pattaya

The Thai Festival of Loi Krathong is celebrated every year on the full moon of the 12th lunar month. Millions of Thais flock to rivers, canals, lakes, reservoirs, and the sea to launch a Krathong as a sign of respect to Ganga, the river goddess. Up north in Chiang Mai Khon loi or fire lanterns […]

Loy Krathong the Day After

Loi Krathong has long been Thailand’s most beautiful festival. Not anymore in Pattaya. Few girls and women were dressed in the traditional costume. The police banned fireworks. Their marine patrols gathered the krathong offerings less than 20 meters from shore. No one was allowed to light a fire balloon, perhaps the most exotic image to […]


Halloween had been celebrated on Oct. 31 for most of my entire life, but last year a Connecticut State representative floated an ill-conceived idea to change the holiday to always fall on a weekend. “Halloween is fun night for the whole family, but not so much when you have to race home from work, get […]

The Thai Etiquette Of Hands

When greeting a Thai male or female, a westerner will stick out his hand. The smiling Thai will offer a wilted bundle of fingers. The farang grasping this imitation of a dead octopus will mistake the weakness of the grip as an exhibition of effeminate behavior. They couldn’t be more wrong. Thai men are vicious […]

Thai National Anthem or Phleng Chat Thai

I haven’t been to a Thai movie theater in ages, but like a baseball game in the States the cinemas play the Thai National Anthem before any feature film. Here are the words. Bring them with you to sing in English, although you probably will get arrested for lese majeste. Thailand is the unity of […]