Three Weeks In Thailand

Discussion in 'Travel & Vacation' started by Terry Page, Jan 25, 2019.

  1. Terry Page

    Terry Page Veteran Member
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    Filling in a few gaps here is one:
    While driving around Mae Sariang a small town by a river on the lower part of the Mae Hon Son Loop which we are driving around, we covered a 4 hour section, plus a detour to a Kayan (Long Neck Village) on the border with Burma (Myanmar), the people have refugee status having fled from Burma during the '80s, and have become self sufficient through tourism, but are not allowed out of the enclave.

    We also visited a temple by a lake in the town of Mae Hong Son..

    Here are a few photos.



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    Some Burmese style temple buildings en route

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    The Kayan people are a sub-group of Red Karen (Karenni people), Tibeto-Burman ethnic minority of Myanmar (Burma).
    Girls first start to wear rings when they are around 5 years old. Over the years, the coil is replaced by a longer one and more turns are added. The weight of the brass pushes the collar bone down and compresses the rib cage. The neck itself is not lengthened; the appearance of a stretched neck is created by the deformation of the clavicle. Many ideas regarding why the coils are worn have been suggested, often formed by visiting anthropologists, who have hypothesized that the rings protected women from becoming slaves by making them less attractive to other tribes.

    It has also been theorised that the coils originate from the desire to look more attractive by exaggerating sexual dimorphism, as women have more slender necks than men. It has also been suggested that the coils give the women resemblance to a dragon, an important figure in Kayan folklore. The coils might be meant to protect from tiger bites, perhaps literally, but probably symbolically.
    Kayan women, when asked, acknowledge these ideas, and often say that their purpose for wearing the rings is cultural identity (one associated with beauty).

    The coil, once on, is seldom removed, as the coiling and uncoiling is a lengthy procedure. It is usually only removed to be replaced by a new or longer coil. The muscles covered by the coil become weakened. Many women have removed the rings for medical examinations. Most women prefer to wear the rings once their clavicle has been lowered, as the area of the neck and collarbone often becomes bruised and discolored. Additionally, the collar feels like an integral part of the body after ten or more years of continuous wear.
    In the late 1980s and early 1990s due to conflict with the military regime in Myanmar, many Kayan tribes fled to the Thai border area. Among the refugee camps set up there was a Long Neck section, which became a tourist site, self-sufficient on tourist revenue and not needing financial assistance.


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    Lisa wearing a backless one, the easy way [​IMG]


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    Dinner at the hotel here on the river bank, the whole building is made of teak wood

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    Gloria Mitchell and Don Alaska like this.

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