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Buddha Day 3/Aug/2012

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The second day of this religious festival, and rather than take photographs of temple buildings, which has been done a million times by a million people. Rather than do that, I'm photographing textures.

My day starts early, 7am, I'm late, as always, and I still have to buy my food offering, but I have plenty of flowers ready, candles and incense. So I hop on my bike and drive to the temple I'm going to visit today, it has a large reclining Buddha, it has a central location so easy to get to, but what it doesn't have is people. Nobody!

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Gold paint and fabric everywhere, great for photography, but statues don't eat, monks do, and a tamboon doesn't work without monks. So I press on heading north to the temple at Thalang. Only a single puzzled woman is there, she doesn't know either, she suggests heading further north on the right side of the road. I press on, but no temple.

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On I go, finally I end up at the temple at Nai Yang, I'd set out to choose a temple with a central location, but now I was almost running out of island!

I hear some sounds around the back, see a few bikes parked up, and decide to investigate. Ahhh, I'm early not late, tamboon time here in the south is 10-11am, no wonder the temples were empty. Since I'm early I walked around the temple garden, palm trees, lotus flowers, trimmed grass, scents everywhere.

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Eventually the temple tamboon gets started, we go through the ritual Buddha prayers, the chief monk talks and talk and talks for what seems like an eternity. He even asks people to buy fewer stock market lottery tickets, that's illegal gambling on whether a stock market ticker is up or down. People chatter in the back of the room, much to the annoyance of the devout at the front.

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After the gift giving, it's back outside, to see they have a reading library, where you can read religious books. I notice the books look pristine, like they've never been opened. I feel slightly intimidated opening the cabinet myself they look so perfect.

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There's food stands here in the temple grounds, so it's easy to find something to eat. I try to feed a sleeping kitten some of my chicken, but it's a little annoyed that I woke it! No matter, 'soft' is a texture I haven't photographed yet.

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