Creativity has been called forth to deal with the circumstances Chiang Mai has been confronting this month. Here are examples that have attracted attention.
1. A company was wondering how to sell a truck load of durian now that markets are deserted. Other fruit venders were moving to street-sides, but these guys drew a lot of attention when they displayed their assets to advantage. [I’m not sure about sales, but pictures of their attempt drew thousands of views on social media.]
2. Social distancing specifies that people keep two meters apart. So when a fellow wanted to give food to a monk he tossed his bag of rice into the monk’s bowl, and then the monk tossed it to his companion to carry. [The video clip of them doing this was another big hit by on-line viewers, although some of us are convinced it was staged.]
3. Mplus+, an LGBT support community led by Dr. Pongthorn Chanlearn, mobilized to provide lunches to people at the out-patient departments of hospitals during the early panic when there were crowds. [In a blog later, I’ll describe how Chiang Mai is responding to COVID induced hunger.]
4. With hair-care shops all closed, Chiang Mai residents have taken up new skills. Scores of social-media friends congratulated themselves for crossing the sartorial frontier. [Yes, this particular picture did not grab wide-spread attention, but some friends thought it was better than the selfie of me making a mango milkshake.]
5. Finally, thanks to young novices being near at hand when fire threatened Wat Phrabatpanam in Lampoon, the fire caused no damage to the famous temple. [Schools are closed due to both the hot-season vacation and the pandemic.]
Rev. Dr. Kenneth Dobson posts his weekly reflections on this blog.