Thursday, March 22, 2007

The king made it rain

I know I'm supposed to be an anarchist and all, but the king of Thailand is pretty flippin' cool.

For example, on New Year's Eve, when there were several bombings around Bangkok early in the day, the King altered the flow of time to cause midnight to happen almost three hours early to protect people from other potential attacks at the "traditional" midnight. And it worked. Thai people celebrated their New Year right along with the king at the "new" midnight. If you ask Thai people, they'll tell you they celebrated at midnight, not earlier. So the king did it -- he altered the flow of time. Cool, eh?

You think so? Well, for his next trick, the other day he made it rain in northern Thailand. In the midst of the dry season. When it never rains. Huh? It turns out he holds a patent on rain-making technology. So he sent some jets up to seed the clouds using his technique as part of the "King's Project."

The "King's Project" is big news in Thailand these days. It includes all kinds of programs to promote a clean environment, organic agriculture and self-sufficiency for Thai communities and the nation as a whole. The king made it rain the other evening to help combat the drought that's been brought on by deforestation, and to scrub some of the forest fire pollution out of the air.

So, for a king, he's pretty switched on to the whole environment and self-reliance thing. And apparently he plays trumpet and is an accomplished oil painter. And the Thai people love him. So I gotta hand it to the guy.

Anyway, we had a nice downpour the other night. We were all so fascinated since we have seen or felt a rain drop for months and months and didn't expect any rain for at least the next six weeks. Folks were running around grabbing their laundry off the lines with this kind of frantic demeanor like "What's happening? What do we do? Wait, what? Rain? OK. OK. What shouldn't get wet? OK, I got it. OK laundry...yeah..." and throwing their stuff inside. And we found out how good of a thatch job we did on various buildings...

Personally, I was stoked that I could sleep in a bit for once and not have to get up early to water the gardens.

Ever vigilant with the camera, Ryan caught this lightning strike above our yoga center during the storm. (See more of Ryan's amazing photos on his website.)

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