Thailand’s traditional New Year, as known as Songkran, is celebrated on April 13 to 15 every year. It is a time when people splash or spray one another with water, to symbolize washing away the old and welcoming the new.
The word Songkran derives from the Sanskrit word for “passage” or “cross over,” representing moving into a new year. Songkran is also celebrated in Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos.
Known by the Taiwanese as the “splashing festival,” Songkran conjures up images of street water fights, with participants using water pistols or buckets. It originated from a traditional Buddhist ritual, and the water represents purification and blessing.
Songkran is about more than water fights. Traditionally, Thais also go to Buddhist temples to donate money or goods to the temple or monks during the festival, and the monks sprinkle holy water, symbolizing blessings, on them. People also bathe statues of the Buddha by pouring water over them. Thais will also sprinkle water in the hands of family elders, symbolizing respect and the receipt of the elders’ blessings.
Miss Songkran beauty contests are also held throughout Thailand, as a way to preserve traditional Thai costumes.
There are around 700,000 migrant workers in Taiwan. Of these, just over 60,000 are from Thailand.
In order to make Thai workers in Taiwan feel at home, Songkran was celebrated on Sunday at the ASEAN Square in Taichung, organized by the Ministry of Labor and the Taichung government. There will be another Songkran celebration held this coming Sunday at City Hall Square in New Taipei City.
(Translated by Lin Lee-kai, Taipei Times)
1. Songkran n.
宋干節；潑水節 (song4 gan1 jie2; po1 shui3 jie2)
2. splash v.
潑水 (po1 shui3)
3. spray v.
噴水 (pen1 shui3)
4. purification n.
淨化 (jing4 hua4)
5. blessing n.
祝福 (zhu4 fu2)
6. sprinkle v.
灑水 (sa2 shui3)
Taiwan’s national drink, pearl milk tea, has taken the world by storm in recent years, and it is the addition of tapioca balls — also known variously as “pearls,” “boba” and “bubbles” — that creates the beverage’s unique flavor and textural experience. However, foreign media are reporting that logistical delays have caused both Taiwan-produced tapioca balls and tapioca powder from Thailand to be stuck inside shipping containers as the shipments await customs approval. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc on the global shipping industry, goods and commodities shipped from Asia, including Taiwan and Thailand, have become held up at
How’s the house-hunting going? (5/5) 你房子找得怎麼樣了？（五） B: The other good thing about the apartment we saw is that it is unfurnished. It has a refrigerator and washing machine, but that’s it. A: Why is that a good thing? I thought you would want it to be furnished, so you didn’t have to fork out for new furniture. B: We own most of what we need. We have a bed, sofa, dining table, chairs and a chest of drawers from the last apartment. A: It’s all good then. Don’t forget to ask about whether there is a management fee, and remember that you will need to pay the agent: I
Are you a dog person or a cat person? (1/5) 你是擁狗派還是擁貓派？（一） A: Why didn’t we see you at the BBQ yesterday? B: I went to the temple. A: Heavens, since when did you become so pious? B: Actually, I went there to see the cat. A: The cat? Oh, you mean the cat that scared us half to death during the night last time? B: Oh, don’t put it like that, she’s lovely. A: 昨天烤肉，你怎麼沒來？ B: 我到廟裡去了。 A: 天哪，你什麼時候變得那麼虔誠？ B: 其實我是去看貓啦！ A: 貓？啊，就是上次半夜把我們嚇得半死的那隻貓嗎？ B: 哎呀，別這麼說，牠其實好可愛。 （Translated by Paul Cooper, Taipei Times／台北時報林俐凱） English 英文: Chinese 中文: