Ao Nang Day 2 - Wedding Day
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Where I stayed
Somkiet Buri Resort Ao Nang
Read my review - 5/5 stars
Read my review - 5/5 stars
What I did
Wat Kaew Korawaram, Kayaking and Ao Nang Sunset
Some official pics at this link (over a thousand pics on CD, but no current access to a CD drive for the netbook)
Today was a big day for us. Michele and I planned on renewing our vows in traditional Thai dress in a Buddhist temple. This would be done at 8am by 3 Buddhist monks at Wat Kaew Korawaram ('Wat' meaning temple). A make-up artist named Da came at 6 am to assist Michele with doing her make-up and her hair….and assist with the proper way to adorn a traditional Thai wedding dress; I had it easy only having to wear fishermen pants and a loose long-sleeve top. Da was joined by a photographer who took many pictures as she worked on Michele's face and hair; she did a fantastic job with both.
Around 7:30 we headed to Krabi town to find Wat Kaew Korawaram. The temple was quiet at that hour. A table was set up front and this is where the ceremony would begin. On this table were various bowls, each holding offerings for the three monks (rice, vegetables, fruits, desserts, water). As we waited for the monks to arrive, a busload of Chinese tourists arrive, many of them teenagers who found it fascinating to see a western couple in Thai dress; they asked if they could take our pictures and we told them NO !!!! Kidding, we let them snap away.
Within minutes, the three monks appeared and Michele and I took our positions at the table; she to my left. As they approached, we put our hands in a prayer position in front of our chest. The first monk, the master monk, approached the first bowl and I uncovered it and scooped out three big spoons of rice into a very large metal bowl he held out, as Michele held my left arm. He then moved in front of the next offering dish and Michele and I jointly deposited goodies into his bowl and continued the process until his share had been offered. We repeated the process with the other two monks after which they faced us and recited a chant. Given it is rainy season, let me reassure you the sun was shining so bright Michele and I were sweating profusely; a combination of nervousness and solar radiance
We then proceeded into the temple where we began with three kneeling bows in front of the Buddha. Once that was done, we sat ourselves in front of the monks. The sweating did not get any easier; to say it felt like a sauna would be understating it…..it was hot !!!!
The ceremony continued with the placing of three dots on our foreheads. Given monks cannot make contact with women, he took my finger, dipped it into the paste and guided it to Michele’s forehead and had me apply the three dots to her forehead. The ceremony then proceeded with the placing of a head sling over our heads, then we read our vows to each other as we placed our new rings on each other’s hands. Our wedding planner then read the traditional western vows of "…till death do us part" after which we affirmed with a “I do”. We then faced the monks and poured water into a bowl from small jug as the monks chanted. The master monk then took a collection of bamboo or straw sticks and dipped it into the water and blessed us each, again in a chant.
The ceremony ended with the signing of the wedding affidavit. Even though it listed Michele and Jean…..we’re pretty sure it counts
We took pictures all around the temple, and then asked to have some pictures taken at Ao Nang beach. The ones posted below are from Michele’s cell phone.
It was a truly memorable experience.
To celebrate, Michele and I decided to do a kayak tour. A great way to end the day. Well, actually, we ended the day at Wang Sai seafood restaurant in Ao Nang beach in time to catch the beautiful sunset.