Dear Matt and Mar,
[28.07.18] Here we go, this morning we picked up my parents and my aunt around 09:30, and soon we were on our way to a destination in Saraburi province. I had no idea why or where my mother wanted to visit, haa haa haa, in fact I had to ask as soon as we were all in the car, haa haa haa.
Ok, we were heading towards Wat Phra Phutthabat, only to found out later that in the past, this temple was really, really, really important to the Chinese community living in Thailand. In fact your great grandmother had to catch an overnight bus to visit this temple, back in those days the roads were terrible, and this temple was pretty much sitting in the middle of a jungle, lol.
Your grandmother recalled that she was too young to join and was crying her eyes out because she had to stay at home :-) and that she had never visited this temple. Now with some context behind the trip, this made the day rather special for me.
Today is the start of Buddhist Lent (the start of the Buddhist Rains Retreat), and this being a rather important temple, so it wasn’t a surprise that about a billion were at the temple, haa haa haa. The energy was super high, with so many worshipers and that made the morning much more fun. this temple has so many temples on several levels, we tried to explore them all, but as it was becoming late in the morning, the heat was becoming uncomfortable, and soon we were off for lunch.
Once again your mother manage to find a good place for us to eat, even with all 7 of us piling into a small restaurant, the entire hefty meal came to less than 50 USD, it just reminded me how ‘too much’ in every sense Bangkok really is.
After lunch, I think your grandparents would have been happy enough to start the 2 hours ride home, but something caught my eye whilst I was going through a list of attractions that was in the area. Wat Khao Wong (Tham Narai) popped up across my phone, a few photos that I saw looked interesting :-)
Once we got to Wat Khao Wong, it blew me away, as part of the temple sits a huge ground where people come and stay, more like a resort for the soul (does that sounds too heavy, haa haa haa), so they come here to stay and meditate, to live a simple life, simple clothes, simple food, no makeup, no electronics and so on.
The grounds, the buildings, the landscape, even the environment was pristine, the ambience was serene, the architecture was attractive. Once we made our way to the small cave it was just the perfect note to end a song :-) Even with all the lighting, and paved floor, it still feel rather erie, of course my mind drifted to those kids stuck in the cave for 10 days, with no light and no food.
Soon we were on the road back, this being the second day of a 4 days long weekend, the roads were as empty as my brain after a few pints, haa haa haa.