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Thursday
Nov292012

Celebrating Loi Krathong 

Despite the weather being a little against us, last night we celebrated the annual Loi Krathong Festival (Loi means 'to float', and krathong are basket-like objects).

We found a great position on the banks of the Mae Kok (river) in Chiang Rai, but we'd no sooner unloaded the van when it began to pour with rain. So much for rainy season being over! Fortunately we were able to shelter under the bridge and find a place that wasn't too muddy to make our krathongs.

Krathongs are round lotus-shaped objects that are beautifully decorated and then released, with a wish, to float down river.

We made ours the traditional way. We started with a round of cut banana stem then added decorations of flowers, intricately folded banana leaves, colourful leaves, joss sticks (incense), candles and coins.

Releasing krathongs into a body of water is said to be a way of letting go of negative thoughts from the past year and to thank the goddess of water, Phra Mae Khongka.  

Loi Krathong (also known as the Festival of Light) is held on the full moon night of the 12th lunar month when the tide in the rivers is highest. Unfortunately the moon was nowhere to be seen last night.

But the weather didn't stop us having a lot of fun, despite getting quite wet! 

See more pictures of the girls' beautiful creations here

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