29 October 2016

The Boat Race Festival

Rivers have long played a vital communication role in Laos and every year it has become a custom that neighbouring villages would race each other to find out who is the fastest. Although other the years, the festival has become more and more secularised, these races have always been dedicated to the Naga (the dragon-like serpents that protect Temples). Lao people fear the Nagas and it is believed that the boat racing is held to either attract them back to the rivers after same many have wandered inland during the rainy season, or conducted for their amusement in exchange for the safety of fisherman and boatmen. The boat racing festival consists of a two-day celebration, but rather than me tell you all about it, I asked Mr. Xeng-Lee to write a small breakdown.

"Boat racing festival usually starts in September every year in Luang Prabang. There are two main days. The first day is the market fair and the second day is the boat racing.

During the first-day people go shopping at Dhun That field and there are a lot of shops selling very cheap things, including, food, drinks, clothes, and toys. It’s really fun.
The second day is the boat racing. The road near the Nam Khan river is full of people who come to cheer their favourite team. It’s village vs village, company vs company, college vs college.
This year I went to the market fair with my mum, my dad, and my grandma. My mum bought two shirts for my dad, two white t-shirts for me and my grandma bought two pairs of trousers. My mom also bought a chicken BBQ. 

The second day I went to the boat racing with Teacher Luke, Tara, Sue, Touk, Dora and my sister Ly Ly. I hope you like the pictures I took."
Teacher Luke being a food vendor
Luke T.

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