Beginning of the Thai New Year, more widely known as Songkran festival, fall on 13th to 15th of April. What started as few polite drops turned to unleashed water fights across all Thailand.
Pouring water on somebody traditionally means to pay respect, to bless and also to wash bad luck away. One could object that there is nothing respectful to aim with huge water gun to somebody’s eyes or mouth in these days. Especially if that person is riding a motorbike and is totally blind for few seconds.
I asked locals when did this change happened, but they have already forgotten the exact date. They just agree that it probably all started in busy touristic places like Khao San Road in Bangkok or on the streets of Pattaya city.
At the end, these days everybody enjoys joyful and funny water fights, especially kids and tourists. But the festival has also its dark side. Because of the dangerous situations created by the combination of water fights, speeding and last but not least drinking and driving, every year hundreds of people dies in road fatalities. Songkran this year has been also in the sign of water shortage due to long dry period.