At the Wat (temple)
Whatever religion you have there is something magic about visiting a Buddhist Wat. There are many wonderful temples in Phon Phisai and even the village of Ban Pho has three.
They all have gorgeous golden decorations, serpents, dragons and of course Buddhas. When you visit them, apart from looking at the rich ornamentation and wall paintings spend some time in contemplation.
You take off your shoes of course before you enter and kneel before Buddha, then wei three times bowing to the ground. Putting your feet towards Buddha or others is a sign of disrespect in Thailand so you always sit with your feet facing away from Buddha.
There are many activities associated with paying your respects to Buddha. Lighting incense sticks and leaving them burning, lighting candles and offering flowers. My favourite is letting small birds out of their cage so that they can fly away to freedom. This is not only symbolic but deeply satisfying, despite the knowledge that they will probably be caught and sold again in another small cage. Such is the circle of life for the small birds.
There is always a big gong or drum that the monks sound in the middle of the night and the monks in their saffron robes going about their daily activities.
Visits to temples are a must during your painting and photography holiday and if you are not sure we can show you the appropriate etiquette.