It’s a strange feeling when you come across fire alongside of the road. I’m not talking about some little piddly fire that’s being used to cook something or what have you but full blown fire, spread across a large area. My first response is that something is wrong but that’s not necessarily correct.
About a month and a half ago, leaves started falling off the trees here and people have been going out collecting leaves to use for their roofs. Now, people have mostly finished collecting the good leaves but there are still a lot of leaves around. The fires, for the most part, are set on purpose to burn the leaves that have fallen in the area so that it’s easier for hunting in the forests. And apparently it encourages mushrooms to grow. What can I say? Thai-yai people love their food and so do I! There may be other reasons too but these were some of the answers I got when I asked. But often these fires get out of control and the result is power lines are burnt, gardens and fields are threatened as are homes in some villages, everyday you find more ash covering things in your home and there is a ton of smoke in the air. There is so much smoke in the air that you can’t see the mountains! Also, it’s been cooler I think since it’s more cloudy. And there’s a weird haze and colour in the sky.
Altogether it’s a strange time of year. I’m not sure how long it’ll last but I think it should be a season of its own – smokey season. In between cold and hot season, smokey season lasts for an unknown length of time and threatens your health like no other season. It turns your white laundry brown as it hangs on the drying rack and leaves sediment around you everywhere to make you think you never clean your house. Black outs are more common so forget getting relief in some aircon or from a fan. Come to MHS today and experience your first (and probably last!) smokey season!