Songkran, from the Sanskit word meaning passing or approaching, is the most celebrated festival in Thailand and an important event on the Buddhist calendar. Linked to vernal equinox it marks the beginning of the new year. This is a period of personal reflection and cleansing. Spring cleaning is an integral part of the celebration and extends to the cleaning of Buddha images, letting go of unwanted and hard times. Washing the hands of a fellow human is revered as a sign of respect and a blessing that will bring good fortune.
In Thailand this simple cleansing blessing takes on a new meaning and from the 13-15 April every year, the entire nation takes to the streets with water guns, garden hoses, buckets and any other implement that can spray water, leaving everyone blessed by the symbolic water which washes away sins and brings luck for the New Year.
With the opening of the borders to Thailand we should all go to Phuket, get blessed and rid ourselves of the past months.