Bugs, Gems, and Kickboxing

Trip Start Sep 2005
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Thailand  ,
Thursday, December 15, 2005

Well, since I'm no longer keeping things secret for a shady aid organization, I can tell you that Classified is actually called Mae Sot. Last week a traveling carnival came through town, and with it we get a rare occasion to see Thais and Burmese getting along or at least having fun in the same place. Technically we're in Thailand, but there's probably more illegal Burmese and Burmese minority groups than Thais in Mae Sot. At the carnival (which coincided with the Thai King's birthday), they throw darts for beer or stuffed animals, shop for what appear to be misappropriated Salvation Army donations, and their kids ride bumper cars together and eat fried insect larvae like you'd eat cotton candy.

Oh, yeah and there's boxing. The bouts are either Muay Thai, or traditional boxing (the ones wearing gloves and with technique) or Burmese vs. Thai (no gloves and not much refinement among the Burmese fighters). Illegal boxing matches (the gloveless ones) spring up along the border a few times a year.

There's a small percussion section on the sidelines that plays to the action. In Burmese, the big drum's called the Bohng, small drums are called Ohzi, and I forget what the tuned gongs are called. I'll find that one out later.

Here's some photos of local junk food, some huge rocks (metalsmiths email me, we'll talk), a boxing video (you might need Quicktime to watch), some music (cd from a street musician from Chiang Mai, not my recording), and absolutely no griping about human rights.

By the way, if anyone wants to be emailed when I update this thing, let me know and I will.
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