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  1. #26
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    On Friday afternoon at 3 pm after the school closed, a delegation of 10 teachers and the director from the school my wife teaches at hired a minivan and traveled the 80kms to the village.
    They sat and ate, gave a gift of money (5000), and then returned home.
    Very nice of them, and my wife was somewhat surprised because she's only been teaching there since May.




    This sort of thing was going on from Wednesday to Saturday. People turning up, eating, tambooning, then leaving.
    We received a delivery of 2 pigs a day for the pot from Wednesday to Sunday. (@ around 8000 baht per pig, it was quite a lot).
    Oldest sister on day one stated she would finance the entire funeral but on condition that donations went to her as reimbursement. If there was a profit, that would be her good luck, and if there was a loss, it would be hers. I was happy with that since I was prepared to put my hand in my pocket as that's the normal thing for my cultural background (every family member puts in). I was a bit stunned that she thought to make a profit and that any surplus didn't just go to Mae, but everyone was happy with that line of thinking. TIT.
    Last edited by Maanaam; 28-06-2017 at 12:17 PM.

  2. #27
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    Monks. Or as my BiL humourously called them, monkeys (an honest mistake in translation). You may have noticed on the casket FiL's name and age. His real age was 77 but on the casket 79 was written. This was explained to me that in his next life he will live longer, and so they fudge the figures now so that he will live even longer than that.
    Thus, 79 monks presided.



    The monks came in in dribs and drabs. There were still more to come and extra seating had to be arranged.



  3. #28
    Thailand Expat misskit's Avatar
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    ^ That's a lot of monks!

  4. #29
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    I think the collective noun is - a "murder" of monks

  5. #30
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    ^ That's crows.
    But it might suit too.

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iceman123 View Post
    I think the collective noun is - a "murder" of monks
    A culture of monks might be more appropriate.

  7. #32
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    Then the cops arrived. Elder sister's hubby is a cop in Satun. They sent a police van load and a police pick-up truck. I counted ten. Some high rank officers, and some mid rank. The lower ranks still wore their sidearms in the chapel, which I found "different to Western thinking".



  8. #33
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    How hi-so was FIL? That is almost all the monks from our tambon. Usual in our village is 5, 7 or 9 monks regardless of age but that's poor Isaan village as a comparison.

    In respect to second party, usual our way is a festival on the first anniversary, which may be a joint affair depending on number of deaths over a short period. This is to celebrate their travel to heaven after a year of being an insect ( or something like this). I know I couldn't upset or kill grasshoppers for a year because one flew into the coffin we chose....

  9. #34
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    Funerals around here (Ubon) are pretty strange. They actually gamble, and drink in the Wat- apparently so the dead person won't feel lonely. Personally, if I was waiting to be cremated I would prefer to rest in peace. Or pieces, if it was a bad car accident.

  10. #35
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    Here's the crematorium and the pyre all loaded with big logs of charcoal.
    At the last moment, just before they brought the casket out, about 5 litres of diesel was poured onto the charcoal.




  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by sabang View Post
    Funerals around here (Ubon) are pretty strange. They actually gamble, and drink in the Wat- apparently so the dead person won't feel lonely. Personally, if I was waiting to be cremated I would prefer to rest in peace. Or pieces, if it was a bad car accident.
    Yeah, after the start of the funeral proper (Saturday), gambling and drinking was happening. FiL didn't drink or gamble, so I believe it was just to keep the guests happy, or that the people running the gambling couldn't be stopped. I didn't take a photo of the dice game because those running it looked dodgy...as dodgy as the game itself. Saw thousands lost at a time, and this is a dirt poor village.
    Vendors of all sorts plied their trade each evening. Toy stalls, food stalls, even a curry paste stall (which I thought really odd...who goes to a funeral and thinks, "Oh, I'll just pick up some gaeng som paste while I'm here"?)

  12. #37
    Thailand Expat Pragmatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iceman123
    I think the collective noun is - a "murder" of monks
    Isn't it a 'Cartel' of monks?

  13. #38
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    Guess customs are different in areas, they bury some here, usually just outside the Wat walls.
    Gather a bad death means a year or 2 in the ground, then they get dug up and taken home, or relatives place for a piss up and party.
    Burnt the next day, no crematorium out here, so jungle burning.

    If you have the cash you have another party years later, can go for days, even when all have gone to bed the music keeps going, ghosts don't sleep.

    Have fewer ghosts now, village got some street lights, before that dogs would start howling as a ghost went a walking around.

  14. #39
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    How do they close the doors?

  15. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pragmatic
    Isn't it a 'Cartel' of monks?
    I don't know, but it should be for Thailand monks. Classic.

  16. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by runker View Post
    How do they close the doors?
    The pyre is on a trolley. You may notice the tracks. The trolley is pushed in and the charcoal lit, then the doors are closed.
    Edit: Sorry, that pic you can't see the wheels or the tracks.

    You bring me to an interesting part.
    After the fire had been burning for several hours, BiL went and opened one of the doors. He saw just charcoal glowing, no flames, no body.
    He was quite excited and came and told everybody. We all went to have a look, and sure enough, it was just a glowing bed of cinders.
    The relatives were almost ecstatic. Not overly joyful, but really happy that his remains had gone to the heavens so quickly.

    That for me was one of the heart-warming moments; Seeing the aggrieved getting consolation from something so macabre.

  17. #42
    Thailand Expat Pragmatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by runker
    How do they close the doors?
    Oven gloves may be?

  18. #43
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    We are Central Thailand so my experiences are relevant to that.

    The Custom/Belief/Superstition that makes me smile is the consideration given to the Partner of the deceased.

    It is thought that the Ghost of the dearly departed will attempt to return home and hop into bed at night.

    So there is someone assigned to sleep in the bed with the deceased's partner so that there is no room for the Ghost.

    After the 3rd or 4th night it's safe to sleep alone again.

    All Cultures have different superstitions, just that this one makes me smile
    Perspective is everything ... it's the difference between going through an ordeal or going through an adventure..

  19. #44
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    ^ I don't think that happened here. Mind you, she (MiL) slept in the chapel every night on the floor, and there was always a few people sleeping in the chapel also.

    What did occur last night and the night before took me aback a little because my wife is not superstitious and is basically atheist. She is in the habit of getting up at 3 am to study. She gets up and goes downstairs leaving me asleep in bed. The night before last she asked me if I could get up also at 3 and accompany her downstairs to sleep on the couch "because it's the third night after the cremation and the ghost might come". Last night/this morning too.
    All the stress lowering her mental defences I suppose.

  20. #45
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    12+ years in the sticks, never went to a funeral, not even the grandmother, then grandfather is still well at 94,
    however for the MIL and FIL i will be going,
    itrs all about booze gambling over here,

  21. #46
    Mex
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    I've been to two...but only the bit where the monks monk..and the odd speech. We have left before the burn.

    Very interesting

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