Thailand’s late king, Bhumibol Adulyadej, was loved by every Thai in the country, it seemed. I was told on multiple occasions that everyone felt like the King was their father or was a part of their family. King Bhumibol lived an incredibly interesting life and ruled Thailand for seven decades. To honor his legacy, Thailand mourned for one year and wore dark/neutral colors while they built a massive crematorium for him.
It was a once in a lifetime thing, to see where the King was cremated, but i also wanted to respect the local people. If most people thought of him like a father, I wanted to be as respectful as possible.
There was an insanely huge turnout for it, locals and foreigners alike.
Groups of people went in shifts of a predetermined amount. Still, I felt like it wasn’t exactly my place to be here no matter how many times I was told that it was okay to go.
I opted not to wait the 2.5 hours to go inside because it felt wrong to me. Instead, we waited 10 minutes to look at it the crematorium from a designated viewing point. We were given a paper badge and were accompanied the viewpoint and were allowed to take pictures as long as they were respectful.
Even though I was apprehensive about going, I’m glad I went because this will never happen again in my lifetime. The crematorium was slated to be removed at the end of November (2017). I’m glad I went, but I’m sad that Thailand had to see their king go.