♥ The Vegetarien Festival, Phuket 2019

  Colourful processions

Today, I propose two series of photos taken during two very recent processions... this first series which shows the processions and the crowd that moves to accompany the "mediums"...

and then a second series of slightly more violent faces taken in close-up... showing well the result of an artist's work that begins very early in the morning, just after 6 am... 
Every year, I tell myself... the vegetarian festival...? Oh no, no,...  and then I go back anyway.... 

This year.... once again, I couldn't help but witness bloody and impressive processions in the streets of Phuket Town...

This really special Vegetarian Festival is finally an excellent opportunity to take some very good photos, certainly quite special, but it is always a pleasure... we could even say that it is a very photogenic event...

  Colors, do you want some.... here it is...!

Rich in colour, these parades remind me a little of the carnival parades in my younger years... and which have since disappeared...

During the processions, there are of course the "mediums" in trance, pierced as impressive as ever... but there are also all around these mediums... their families, their friends... who follow them throughout the journey and who set the atmosphere.

The children have a great time disguising themselves, having fun, parading and of course letting themselves be photographed....

These parades in the streets of Phuket Town, are noisy (we like the noise in Thailand)... but the atmosphere is always very pleasant. Smiles, welcome signs... everything is done naturally without the slightest aggressiveness... I was going to write also without the slightest risk... I would have lied because we are never safe from taking a series of firecrackers... these firecrackers well understood countless that we hear all the time... 

However, since I have been going to these parades, I have never been touched either closely... or far away.

Most of these processions have their point of end at Saphan Inn... on the day of these photos, 3 Chinese temples in Phuket had their processions... and when they arrived, it was simply the photo pose, without any hesitation. 
Arrivée finale à Saphan Inn... après 6 km de marche à un rythme assez soutenu.

  Processions as impressive as ever 

Here is the second series of photos much more violent... much more raw... 

These piercings of cheeks, tongues, ears... are made in the temple in the early morning around 6am... these intense moments are of course accompanied by prayers, blessings and then also photo sessions with all the family and friends who then compose the group that will walk through the streets of Phuket in a deafening noise.

The drop point being Saphan Inn...5 to 6 kilometers away.  

Just before the start of the procession, a solemn moment in front of the temple (here, the temple of Naka)... prayers, wishes, celebration and all the people kneeling or squatting (participants or simple spectators) for a few moments.

Yes,... you see well: there are also some young women who are part of these processions... certainly they are less pierced than most men... but well... it can surprise the tourist who sees this whole environment for the first time... 
This is what remains once the object is removed... a beautiful scar that will not disappear... in this case it must have been a sword or a tube...

To care... with just a piece of plaster for this one...

We can see on the other cheek, scars probably from previous years' processions... so this is not the first time this person has experienced it... 
Un moment particulier aussi à l'issue de la procession (ici au temple de Saphan Inn) où le médium, débarassé de ses "piques"... se laisse "tomber" dans les bras d'une autre personne se trouvant juste derrière.... cette scène est brève, quelques secondes...