Till Death Do Us Part

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I think Rayban are missing out on a huge advertising opportunity

A few years ago I went to visit a friend of mine on the Thai island of Koh Samui. It’s a lovely place and we hired a couple of motor bikes and really enjoyed driving around. After a couple of days my mate, John, said, “Have you been to see the dead monk?” Not the average question, you get on a holiday in the sun, but it got my attention. I asked what he meant and he explained. I was in! The next day we went to see him. Luong Pordaeng died in 1973, he was seated cross legged saying his prayers at the time. As his relatives prepared him for his cremation, they noticed that he wasn’t changing. Five days after his death, he just looked exactly the same, they was no signs of the usual, post mortem disintegration.

Being Thai and him being a monk, they took this as a sign. So, as you would, instead of cremating him, they stuck him in a glass box and left him outside the temple so everyone could see. Forty years later and he is still there, and I have to say, he’s looking remarkably well for a dead chap. His eyes dropped out after a few years but they simply stuck a pair of Raybans on him, and now he looks, well … cool.

Pattaya Bride
and do you take this man . . .

I found this fascinating, but when I investigated stories from around the region, regarding dead people, I found some other crackers. A few years ago in the Quang Nam Province on The South Central Coast of Vietnam a guy lost his wife, all very sad and I’m sure plenty of readers can identify with him. The fifty-five year old man was so distraught and just couldn’t let go that he took to sleeping on the grave. This gave him a sense of feeling close to his dearly departed and it went on for quite a while, twenty months, in fact. Finally, upon the pleadings of his children, he realised that this was not really normally behaviour, so he dug her up and took her home. She’s still there, the neighbours don’t visit, but the police did. He told them he wanted to take her out of the cold and wet, so they though, Oh well, no harm done.

In Surin in Thailand Chadil Deffy was engaged to his childhood sweetheart for years. Despite her pleadings to get married he kept putting it off saying that he would marry her when his studies had finished. Sadly she was then killed in a road accident. Chadil was bereft, he had failed her and all she wanted was a wedding, so he gave her one. He dressed in his best suit, bought her a wedding dress, laid her out on a mat, laid down next to her and took the vows and popped a ring on her dead digit. Incredibly he found a monk prepared to do the service and his friends turned up. It got a lot of publicity at the time, one person commenting, “ I never knew her but she looked so full of life.”

Then of course there’s the well known story of Crazy Jeff. I have no idea why they called him that. He was an English guy that hung around Sukhumvit Soi 4 in Bangkok, he was well known about Nana Plaza. His Thai wife died and he was devastated. He decided that he couldn’t possible be parted from her, so he kept her head. He had it for years, would walk into the bars on Soi Nana and put the skull on the bar as he enjoyed a pint, nobody batted an eyelid.

Only in Asia eh?