BAMBI News November 2019

Published on: November 17, 2019

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Dear BAMBI members, Welcome to November, the month of Loy Krathong, my favorite Thai celebration! Loy Krathong is celebrated on the evening of the full moon of the 12th month of the Thai lunar calendar.

Loy Krathong is translated as “floating basket” and on this day, rivers, canals, ponds, and even swimming pools are lit up with beautiful floral creations. The idea is to send wishes and hopes for blessings and forgiveness into nature. Similar festivals are found in several Asian countries. In Japan, we float lanterns in rivers connecting to the sea.  

I have been living in Bangkok for nine years and have noticed a change in the materials used for krathongs. Recently I have seen more biodegradable forms, even ice krathongs rather than plastics. Hopefully, all the krathongs will be earth-friendly soon. 

One of the highlights of the festival is to make a krathong by yourself. It is a very Thai experience. Using a cross-section of a banana tree trunk, you can decorate it with intricately folded banana leaves and flowers and add a candle and incense sticks. I used to make them with my children when they were smaller. Finally, you light the candle and incense with a prayer then send it off to the sea or the other side of the swimming pool.

Last year BAMBI offered krathong making activities at playgroups with a swimming pool. This year, we are planning to do something even more exciting. Krathong making is not only a fun experience but very educational. Since you can use natural materials like leaves, you need to use sharp sticks like toothpicks to hold the leaves and flowers together. You also need to light the lantern with fire. This month’s theme is about safety and taking care of each other so please take care if you are making them with your little ones. This might be a good opportunity to teach them safety skills to do with lighting matches and handling sharp objects.

Please be sure to join us to experience one of the most fun cultural celebrations. The detailed information will be posted on our website and Facebook. See you all there!

Akiko Cayne
Acting Chairwoman, BAMBI  

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