The Holiday Season
I am not talking about what some people in America and Britain erroneously call the holiday season, because that is Christmas and New Year, and I am sure that no-one who in not a Christian minds us calling it that. It’s only the misguided white Americans and Brits who think they have to change a two-thousand-year-old tradition for non-existent sensible complainants.
No, I am talking about Thailand, where people are Buddhist, and so don’t celebrate Christmas, but do now recognise the Western New Year. It is the holiday season in Thailand, and always has been, simply because November and December are the coolest months of the year.
It is very convenient. End-of-year office parties can be held outside without the need for fans and mosquito repellent, because it is cool enough to discourage them at 20-25c, which is 10-20 degrees Celsius lower than during a normal daytime.
Needless to say, it is a popular time to hold family occasions such as weddings and house-warming parties, and a great way of not having to have people traipsing around your new home.
Those Thais who are married to a Caucasian, like my wife, may also put on a small Christmas party for the immediate family, but the biggest party of the year for a third to a half of all Thais is the New Year.
I personally cannot understand why and agree with the rest of them the the old Thai New Year, called Songkran, lasting for three days from April 13th, is far better. However, it is at the hottest time of the year.
The holiday season is the period of choice for anyone who can decide when to hold a party. Banks give large parties for preferred customers, as do insurance companies. However, it doesn’t stop there, garages, schools and local authorities give parties, where preferred citizens can book a table for 7-12 of their friends at cost price.
When my wife and I were active in the party set, we could go to one three or four times a week for the whole period, but usually only went twice a week. These days, it’s essential parties only.
Age and familiarity are to blame, the parties and the holiday season are still there.
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All the best,