Thursday, January 29, 2009

Monks in Chiang Mai, Thailand

This morning, I left our hotel at 6:08 for a little jog. It was still dark outside, and people were cleaning the streets from the previous days' night market. There were also a large number of monks combing the streets. Monks are as pervasive here as curry. Apparently, most Thailand men spend some time in their lives serving as monks. Most of the monks I saw this morning were between the ages of 10 and 15. They were all dressed in bright orange skorts and and a shoulder sash. Their heads are clean shaven and for the most part, they go barefoot. They reminded me of zombies in their robotic actions and lifeless, silent faces. Some of the monks were accepting bags of rice from women. As one woman handed over the bag of rice, she was bowed down in front of the young monk with her hands folded as though she was praying. I couldn't help but wonder if some of these women were the young monks' mothers or sisters.

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