More Mor Lam

Trip Start Mar 14, 2006
Trip End Mar 15, 2007

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Friday, August 11, 2006

So today was the big day for the music and dance competition which could not have come fast enough to save me from the repeated music practicing all week which has been echoing around the whole school.

I headed to Khum Phaaw's school in the morning with Mali where it would be held and after being roped into speaking to some of the school's students the first round of dancing kicked off. The costumes were all traditional Thai styles which made me realize just how many there are with wave after wave of dances each with a different elaborate costume even if the actual dances differed little.

The dancing in the morning continued onto Mor Lam in the afternoon which is the traditional Thai style of dancing for Issan province with everyone squeezing into what little shade was available on the sports field with those performing in the costumes having to look graceful and beautiful while no doubt suffering in the heat.

It was during the watching of more Mor Lam performances in the town's center (the performances were all across town) that the memory card in my camera decided to die resulting in me losing a weeks worth of pictures including all those of today. I'll just say that some of the words that escaped my mouth at that time I really couldn't teach in the classroom.

After a break from the dancing at home we set out again to grab some dinner at a street side eatery before heading back to face the music once more.

Now I appreciate the hard work that has gone into the performances and genuinely like the style and music but after 3 hours it did start to get a little repetitive. After 6 hours it started to get tiresome but after almost 10 hours of watching today it simply became painful not helped by the fact that each dance went on for so long and seemed to tease you with what seemed like a finale to then wind back up again for another 20 minutes.

We finally left the field around 1am after nearly 17 hours, albeit with a few breaks, so I think I can say we at least saw some traditional Thai dancing today.
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