Wedding plans / info

Trip Start Jan 08, 2004
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Sunday, January 22, 2006

"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion." HH, The 14th Dalai Lama.


Thanks for those of you who can make it to my wedding. For those that can't, please don't worry.

I realise that many of you will be travelling quite a long way and some of you will be in the Kingdom of Thailand for the first time. Although I would like to welcome you all and spend time with you, I realise in the lead up to and during the wedding I may not have as much time as I would like. I will try to help book accommodation for you and do whatever else I can for you - so please let me know in advance when you are arriving and your plans. You need to tell me these things at least a month in advance as for a couple of weeks prior to the wedding I will be working and out of contact.

I hope some of you have an extra week or so to spend in Thailand. I think that the people coming are a good group and all of you would enjoy spending time with each other. I am looking forward to Kanchana and me spending time with you. Also I very much want you to see some of Thailand and enjoy the great food, scenery and people that live here. So I am planning to arrange a group trip / tour for about a week starting after the wedding. You are all welcome to come along. Please let me know your intentions so I can book rooms etc.

It is pretty hard to choose where to take you. There are some beautiful islands and beaches to go to; however I know not everyone is into beaches. I personally also love the mountains in the North and I think the Hill Tribe people that live in that area would be interesting for you to visit. Many of them even surpass the Thais in politeness and hospitality. But it is quite a journey and maybe a bit uncomfortable for some. So at the moment I am thinking of the Kanchanaburi area.

I can hire a bus from Bangkok for us cheaply and it doesn't take too long to get there. It is slightly cooler than Bangkok and there is much to see although it is a quieter area than Bangkok. There is a multi tiered waterfall to visit and swim in. A temple that keeps tigers. There is the new version of the "Bridge over the River Kwai" and the war cemetery and museum. We could hire a house boat type thing and cruise up the river for a day or two. Great because there is a cooler breeze coming off the river and the chance to jump in for a swim at any time. There are pretty amazing temples to visit and if we get time we could go further into Kanchanaburi and visit some of the Karen people that live in the Sanklaburi area. Perhaps visit the orphanage where Jaree works or the Karen women's coop where Kat has helped at. I would also love to get to 3 Pagoda Pass and maybe see Hellfire Pass (a particularly harsh area of Burma - Thai railroad).

So if that sounds ok, let me know your thoughts.


Presents.

I think it is Western custom to buy presents for a wedding. In fact I think it is Western custom to buy things and spend money at almost every opportunity.

Please do not buy Kanchana and I presents for our wedding.

Why?
1. You have already spent a lot of money to come to the wedding. I do not want to cause you to spend more.
2. Kanchana and I live in a tiny cramped 1 room apartment. We do not have any space for more things.
3. We have everything we need and want. If we want anything else we can probably buy it in Thailand for less cost than you can.
4. Every dollar spent or earned in reality represents some resources being used up from the Earth. An unwanted present is probably not the wisest way to use up the Earth's resources.


If you are excessively rich and still feel you need to give us something to celebrate our wedding please just give us a little cash and we will put it to good use.

Another option for you: I plan to pay for some of my friends who do not have much money to come to the wedding. I hope to bring Dao and Phung from Vietnam, Boun Savat from Laos, I will pay for Monk Boun Thavees costs, I will pay for Jaree, etc......
I think I can afford all this and I know that these people cannot. If you want to help me, feel free to help cover some of the transport, food and accommodation costs for these people.

Thanks. See ya


Oh, if you want some ideas on what there is to do in Bangkok there are lots on the internet. Here are two examples:
http://www.bangkok.com/
http://www.gothailand.com/index.htm
http://www.bimandruth.com/travel/thailand/
I wouldn't bother buying a Lonely Planet guidebook, it is a waste of money. I can also give you more suggestions when you get there or prior if you ask me.



UPDATE:

I think Kanchana can only have 3 or 4 days off after the wedding. So we will go to Kanchanaburi but maybe for a shorter time. Then maybe some people will need to go home. If some people want to travel some more, we could go to an island to the East or up North. What do you think?

UPDATE (20 March 2549)

Hi, I still waiting to find out exactly what will happen, but it will be something like this:

The wedding is on 6 July at Alexander Hotel. The ceremony starts at 0900hr.
The first part of the ceremony will involve monks and will go for a few hours or so. After we will have some lunch and then some free time / snooze time before the dinner at 1800hr.

http://www.apmforum.com/columns/thai15.htm
The above link mentions some Thai wedding customs. One that it does mention is that you shouldn't wear black to our wedding as that is the colour for funerals and is bad luck for us.

The day after the wedding I will leave free for people to sleep or explore Bangkok or hang out with Kanchana and I and any of her family that are still around. This also allows Kanchana some time with her family from Isaan.

On Saturday 8 July we will go to Kanchanaburi via the floating markets. Anyone who wants to come is welcome. We will go for 8, 9 and 10 July and then Kanchana needs to come back to Bangkok to do work on the 12th. I haven't made any firm plans yet for Kanchanaburi but perhaps it will be a something like the 3 day Kanchanaburi trip mentioned at http://www.thai-blogs.com/index.php?blog=23&title=a_trip_to_kanchanaburi&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1

Other info on Kanchanaburi at:
http://www.thailandguidebook.com/provinces/kanchanaburi.html

http://www.thailandguidebook.com/k_index.html

When we get back to Bangkok we can drop off Kanchana and anyone who needs to go to the airport. If you like from Wednesday 12 to Friday 14 July we can go to Hua Hin. See the attached pictures. A friend of a relative of Kanchana has a holiday house we can use there. Hua Hin is a beach town and the house is about 200m from the beach. It has 5 bedrooms and plenty of room, so you can all come. We can go to the beach and eat sea food and generally hang out.

After Hua Hin I will probably go back to Bangkok and let you guys travel on by yourselves if you wish.

How does that all sound?

Oh, if you are still around Bangkok on Saturday 15 July maybe Kanchana and I and kids and whoever will go to Jutujuk weekend markets or a waterfall or something and then on Sunday Kanchana has to teach. If you wish to go with her and maybe teach some English / talk to her students perhaps you can.


Here is a link to a good picture essay of what a Thai wedding looks like. I am not sure why this man didn't shave or comb his hair, but I will try to do better. Unfortunately my wedding is not in the countryside, it is in a flash hotel in Bangkok, so it won't quite be the same as these pictures - it will be a bit more fancy.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/christe/sets/996530/
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