Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Rak Ther Prathet Thai

Thailand is in the midst of political crisis.

I don't write about it because... I don't know.  I write about seizures and cute kids and black bean cupcakes.  Shootings in the street and uprisings aren't really part of my scope.

Plus, it doesn't really affect us on a personal level.  Whim has strong convictions, like almost all Thai people, but we don't participate in the rallies as a family.  We continue on with our day to day, and though every now and then the schools may close, for the most part it doesn't even feel real. 

On Sunday we were downtown visiting Whim's dad in the hospital, just a few meters away from one of the sites.  In running a few errands for him, we ended up passing though the area at 6:00 pm, during the nightly broadcast of the national anthem.  One beautiful custom of Thailand is the way everyone stops to respect the flag twice a day.  Whether you're walking in the park or eating at the market, at 6:00 everyone stops to stand at attention as the anthem plays over the loudspeaker.

So we stopped in the midst of the rallying protestors and sang together.  Thousands of voices rang out and flags were waving in every direction. It was beautiful to experience. 

Though it was calm and peaceful, we didn't linger.  As the song came to an end, we continued on and were soon back to the hospital.

I am still trying to reconcile the moment we experienced with the tragic news we heard later of two children who were killed in an explosion at another site in the city.   A four year old and a six year old.

That was someone's M and L. 

7 comments:

  1. I'm sorry. I had no idea. That must be somewhat frightening.

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    1. Because we're so removed from it, it doesn't feel personally frightening, but it is very sad.

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  2. Oh, how heartbreaking and devastating. And when you put it like that (because of course it *is* like that) it just makes me feel queasy. That was someone's Miles and Lennon. :(
    I like that custom of stopping to sing the National Anthem. That really does sound beautiful. I hope Whim's dad is okay. --Lisa

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    1. It really is beautiful. I wish we did the same thing in the United States.

      Whim's father passed away on Thursday. He suffered very little and was surrounded by his family, which is comforting.

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  3. Your words are touching, and enlightening. Thank you for sharing such a touching slice of your life.

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    1. Thank you :) if you decide to start up your own blog, let me know!

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  4. I guess I post under Tony's account, but it's me!

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