Daily life in Asia
It’s not street photography. In this project, I try to capture the feel of everyday life in South East Asia.
I was inspired by Nick DeWolf’s photo trips to SE Asia in the early 1970s… but obviously time marches on and South East Asia has changed considerably.
There are motorbikes… lots of motorbikes. Small motorbikes (100-125cc) are often the only means of family transport in Asia. Complete with luggage and chickens, this family of 5 were travelling through Vientiane in Laos. I tried to ask the guy about their journey, but he couldn’t speak English.
In Thailand, it is common for young men to spend time in the temple as Buddhist monks. It’s a big event for the family with many rituals. The walk to the temple is lively with music, dancing and alcohol.
One of the most troubling things in Thailand is the total disregard for personal safety on motorcycles. Crash helmets are rarely worn. Parents carry babies and toddlers. The Buddhist belief when you die, you come back again doesn’t help… nor does the Thai logic if you lose a child, it’s easy to make another.
Most Thais are Buddhists and Buddhism is a big part of daily life in Thailand. Early every morning, monks walk through towns and villages collecting Alms. On New Year’s Day in Krabi, all the monks descend from the temple into the town for a mass Alms giving.
Like all Asian countries, Thailand is a land of stark contrast. Away from cosmopolitan Bangkok and the ‘famous’ tourist beaches, life in the provinces is much different. Parts of the village where I live are virtually Third World with no made up roads, open drains and rickety power supplies.
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