One of the great things about being at Baan San Fan is that you become part-and-parcel of daily Thai life. This means that you may well get opportunities to do things that most travelers won’t get to experience. Last week I was lucky enough to be invited to a wedding near Gai and Sam’s hometown of Kanom in the South West of Thailand. I was a little concerned because I’d forgotten to pack my eveningwear but I needn’t have worried.
Sam’s nephew was getting hitched at the tender age of 21 and the party was being held at her brother’s house which, I subsequently discovered, is quite a long way out into the wilds. We were deep into rubber country.
Her brother’s house is constructed of concrete and teak and stands on stilts. Underneath the house there were a number of people busily preparing the food for the main event. We were lucky enough to get a taste of things to come as Sam and I tucked into spicy curries and delicious soups and salads.
After lunch we left the ladies to it and went off to visit Sam’s family in his home village – Kanom. Again the house was located deep in the rubber tree plantations. As we walked down a dusty lane to his mum’s house Sam explained to me how he would have to walk 10km to go to school every day. Imagine that!!!
After a quick chat and a few photocalls we spent a short time delivering eggs from the orphanage to various friends and family. I really was right in the inner sanctum of Thai life!!! After meeting several happy and smiley people we went down to the beach to see where Sam would hang out as a kid.
An hour later we were back at the wedding and things were in full swing. We parked a the back of a line of around 50 trucks and walked down to the party. On the stage were a number of pretty Thai girls singing local laments with a little help from the guests.
Gai’s dad was sitting at a table in sunglasses surrounded by his bevy of beautiful daughters all of whom seemed to have equally beautiful children. A table was pulled up for me and Sam and within seconds there were 6 dishes of food and a bottle of rum sitting in front of us. I have to say that everybody made me feel incredibly welcome and I didn’t have to ask for anything, it would just appear!
A few hours later after too much rum and plenty of laughter it was time to make the long journey back to Baan San Fan. I’d thoroughly enjoyed meeting the family and their highly amusing friends and savoured every bit of the amazing Thai hospitality which was afforded me. Being privy to the wedding was truly an unforgettable experience.