Seeing as my family and friends have much to celebrate recently, I thought this week’s Thai Throwback Thursday should also feature a special occasion, my third birthday. When I turned three, I celebrated in Bangkok, Thailand. Living on the other side of the world, it was always rare for my grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins to share birthdays with my mum, dad and me. We would always try to visit at different times of the year to make up for this but obviously it became difficult once I started school, as my birthday is in October. I do remember visiting at Christmas one year, which was quite strange for me as I couldn’t understand why there weren’t decorations, trees and Santa. It was also warm and there definitely was no prospect of a snowy Christmas.
Although I don’t remember this birthday celebration in Thailand, I know the cake in the picture would have been delicious. Thai cakes are some of my all-time favourite sweet treats. The icing and sponge is so soft and delicate that it just melts in your mouth. You may have guessed from earlier posts that I have quite a sweet tooth so whenever I’m in Bangkok, I will overfill on ruam mit (jelly pieces in iced coconut milk), khanom chan (layered rice flour dessert) and luk chup (yellow bean and coconut paste formed into vegetable shapes and painted with coloured gelatine).
Have you tried any Thai desserts and sweets and if so, what are your favourites?
I was at a Thai temple in Thailand when this photo was taken and about three-years-old, so circa 1985. I think it was the Grand Palace in Bangkok and my uncle wanted me to pose for a picture but I was afraid to be up off the ground. Those are his hands just in shot! Growing up with a Thai mother and relatives has meant that I have always been to temples and to many Buddhist ceremonies. Songkarn (Thai New Year), Loi Krathong (a festival that celebrates light, it involves making decorations which can float on the river) and Wan Dek (Children’s Day) are probably my most enjoyable as a child.
I am pictured here in the Uposotha Hall at the Thai Temple in Wimbledon. I wouldn’t say I was particularly religious but I like the idea of a higher power who looks after me, my family and friends. As I mentioned in my post about Chinese New Year, our family and friends believe that if you ask the monk in this hall for a wish, as long as it is reasonable, i.e. you don’t ask to win the lottery or to live forever, that it is usually fulfilled. I asked the monk for Andy to get a new job closer to home as his commute is currently an hour per journey. Guess what? He has been offered a new job which is 30 minutes from home! One of the suggested offerings for the monk if your wish comes true is 99 hard boiled eggs. It sounds very bizarre but apparently those are the terms!
Let me know if you like my Throwback Thursdays or if you have asked for a wish and it has come true.