Date: 28 October 2009, 11.15am
Camera: Canon 400D with Sigma 17-70/f2.8-4.5
Thailand is known as the “land of smiles” but probably more accurately refers to as the “land of politeness”. Thais has a special way of greeting known as wai. This consists of a slight bow with hands clasped together as if in a prayer. If the hands are held higher in relation to the face and a lower bow, more respect or reverence is being shown by the wai giver. The wai is also commonly used as a gesture of thanks or seeking forgiveness. It is speculated that the wai originated from an ancient greeting as a means to show that neither individual had any weapons. However, it is more likely to originate from Buddhist tradition where one claps their hands together and bring it down towards the ground three times after prayers.