We have mixed feelings about Songkran, in that one of us loves charging about town squirting water into the faces of old women and children, while the other loathes it and won’t venture outside for the duration.
This is our third Songkran and our second in Chiang Mai, and I felt the event was a little quieter than usual this year. There were still patches of mayhem but the crowds were a little sparser than our last Songkran in 2013 and at times I was able to walk a decent distance without being interfered with down deserted lanes.
Perhaps this is because Thailand is still within the official mourning period after the death of the King, a crackdown by the government on certain behaviours – though the rules seemed to have been largely ignored and the government has since denied issuing any restrictions – the crappy weather, or a combination of all three?
The sun did come out here and there and, while it might seem a little odd that rain would stop play when everyone is soaked to the skin, there is a big difference between cooling down when the sun is burning in the sky and shivering around in the rain. Just imagine how many of the older population would be done away with if we celebrated New Year like this in northern Europe: