My theory on Water Splashing Festival in town is you either have to embrace it or avoid it. There’s no in between. You can’t expect to go outside on the days of celebration and stay dry at all—so either stock up on food beforehand and stay indoors, or join the madness. I’ve done both, depending on my mood that year.
My first Water Splashing Festival was in 2002 in MS, further west up the border from here. I had several friends come to visit me during the holiday, and we bought Super Soakers and played with kids in the street. Foreigners make prime targets during this holiday, so I stayed wet for several days straight.
The worst hit I took was outside the main market in town, where I had taken a couple of friends to shop for Dai bags and skirts. To that point in the morning, we had all stayed relatively dry. We needed to meet another friend at the airport, so we headed out to the street to catch a taxi. Just as I opened the car door, a kid ran up and pegged me square in the middle of my back with a water balloon. I was soaked to the skin.
Dripping wet as I was, I still needed to get to the airport, though I wasn’t sure how the taxi driver would feel about me getting in his car in that condition. “No problem!” he laughed, as I apologized for the water. He was dressed only in a pair of shorts and flip-flops and didn’t seem to be the type of guy to get real uptight about anything.
When I got out at the airport, I left a little puddle in the front passenger seat of his car. He laughed again as I made some embarrassed comments about how wet I was.
That day I was wearing a sarong I’d only worn a couple of times before, so the dye still faded when it was washed. Or when I was hit with a water balloon. I discovered later in the day that my underwear had been dyed bright blue and purple during the drenching.
(to be continued)
Next in the series: ”Water Splashing Past: SJ“