Bum Conundrum


Chiang Mai’s wats are funny old places.

Many of the riverfront wats have kayaks for hire. Most have an assortment of lounging cats and dogs.

As you can see, wats are pretty relaxed.

I’ve seen monks give a temple dog a gentle roughhousing in the middle of a funeral ceremony. I’ve seen mourners give my daughter fish food to throw into the temple fishponds. We’ve taken our breakfast into a wat to take advantage of their picnic tables. I’ve seen wats with little children’s playgrounds.

I love Chiang Mai’s wats. And I love them for many reasons.

There are so many different styles of buildings and statuary.

There’s the dragonesque naga …

… peaceful Buddhas …

… demure maidens.  And…

… Singha, the mythical lion-y type beasts that often guard temple gates.

On the way into a wat, it’s all WOW-WOW-WOW, as all the gold and glitter and soaring skylines dazzle your senses.

On the way out of a wat, it’s WHAT the HELL is THAT????

It looks like an enormous puckered bum hole … pointing right at the Buddha statues in the wat. In the wat where it’s rude to point your feed at the Buddha.

The arseholes in the wats are many and varied. (And they usually smack me in the face – metaphorically – after we’ve packed away our camera.)

It has taken me some time to work up the courage to ask a Thai person what the deal is with the derrières. And the amazing thing is, no one I’ve asked has even noticed the unusual temple anuses. When I start with the “whys”, everyone I’ve asked just laughs and says “it’s just Thailand”.

I really do love this place. Temple bums and all.

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7 years ago

By: Barbara

A career girl who dropped out, traveled, found love, and never got around to going home again. Currently on a year-long World School adventure with my two kids, seeing what this wonderful world can teach us.

4 Comments

  1. that is too, too funny.
    wandering educators recently posted..Teaching and Tripping

  2. Theodora says:

    They also have bumholes at Angkor Wat. It’s the earthy sense of humour in Hinduism/Buddhism, that sees bulls at Balinese funerals equipped with huge dangly cock and balls. With gold pubes, I will have you know…

    Great pics, btw!
    Theodora recently posted..Voices from Post-Revolutionary Egypt 6: The Taxi Driver

  3. Anji says:

    This post made me smile!! There are so many things that people do in temples and the majority of them don’t really know why! I experienced this feeling too after visiting the temples in India.

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