Thai Village Party!

Thai Village Party!

Fire balloons at Thai reception of our Wedding World Tour

Immediately following the Thai Wedding and brunch of our 4-wedding world tour, we took the chance to turn up the AC and take a short nap while our friends went shopping and got affordable Thai massages. (I think they said they were $3 or $5 for an hour.) Then on to our next excitement … a party with the entire small village!

(click through below if you don’t see more pictures!)

Unfortunately, we got a late start. I think we missed something which was supposed to take place at a very old Buddhist temple, but our gracious hosts never said a word, so “what we missed didn’t hurt us,” I guess. But when we went to pickup our family from Riverside Guesthouse, we were happily surprised to find our new friends Quentin and Stephanie — both from France, whom we had met on the short flight to Chiang Mai a few days earlier. We had invited them to the wedding on the plane, but didn’t think they’d be able to divert from what they were planning and actually meet us there. We were so glad they did — they were both wonderful, fun, amazing people, and we enjoyed their company that night and the next morning.

So we all took the long drive (getting lost made it longer) out to a small village outside of a small town outside of a small city in a relatively small country … and to be honest, I have no idea the name of the village.

When we arrived, about 100 of the villagers were there waiting. A pig had been roasting on a spit all day…

Roasting a pig at the Thai reception of our Wedding World Tour

… and there was much toasting of the many bottles of Thai rum. We snacked on pieces of the freshly-roasted pork (AMAZING!) and soon it got dark.

Thai reception of our Wedding World Tour

Out came the fire balloons — which we had long been looking forward to. They were quite … interesting. Once a fire balloon was lit, we had to hold it for a bit while the air inside heated up. Then we’d let it go. However, sometimes in the waiting the wind would come up a bit, and some balloons, when let go, would go sidewise instead of up. Sideways right into the dry trees which bordered our area. Then they would sit in the tree, burning away, causing quite the panic amongst the visitors — we really didn’t want to burn the village down!!! — but no big concern amongst the locals.

Fire balloons at Thai reception of our Wedding World Tour

Our friend Quentin tried to “blow” the balloon up in the sky, chasing it as it drifted a bit too low until it caught the right updraft …

Chasing a fire balloon up at Thai reception of our Wedding World Tour

Fortunately, we didn’t burn anything down, nor did we even catch any trees on fire … and all was well. The balloons were fun, and quite beautiful to watch as they soared off, farther and farther in the distance as little specks of light …

Fire balloons at Thai reception of our Wedding World Tour

Fire balloons at Thai reception of our Wedding World Tour

Fire balloons at Thai reception of our Wedding World Tour

We enjoyed the rest of the night, seeing a large full moon rise above us, and headed home … we’d started at about 5am, had the wedding, the brunch, and the village reception to culminate our Thai wedding. We were married, twice now, and our bond felt more sacred, more secure, and — with the added feeling from the village party — we truly understood “community” in a much deeper sense of the word. We had new friends from France and Thailand, closer bonds with our family who had accompanied us, and new “family” from our wonderfully generous Thai hosts. We couldn’t have been happier.

April Malina and Jason Niedle at Fire balloons at Thai reception of our Wedding World Tour

Next up … Bangkok! (And below, a gallery of some of the extra photos) …