Monday, October 26, 2009

Vegetarian Day in Phuket – Body Piercers Lead Parade

Photo Courtesy of Thairath

PHUKET – Locals and tourists joined a parade led by body piercers to celebrate ‘vegetarian day’. The body piercers attracted a crowd of supporters by stabbing themselves with metal sticks, casing themselves in barbed wire, and doing a heap of other painful things.

The festival in Phuket is known for attracting a large number of male and female body piercers. A typical parade usually means completing a full round of the city.

The idea/belief is that only vegetables should be eaten on the day. But other than eating veggies, to reflect this belief, individuals pierce themselves with sharp objects - especially around their cheeks - to suffer in place of common people.

With the economic downturn, those who didn’t take part in the festival chose to consume vegetables anyway; many took lunchboxes to be filled with vegetables provided by temples. The temples apparently used 60 big bags of rice and 20 tonnes of vegetables to provide for everyone.

Writer: Adrian Tse & Chet Chetchotisak