The Best Dressed Tree In The World?
There are many questions in life you never think you will ever have to find an answer for. ‘Where is the best dressed tree in the world?’ is probably one that comes under such a heading. But if ayone ever asks you such a question, I think I may have found your answer.
I will admit, I haven’t done extensive research on the subject, but I can safely say that the tree with the best attire may reside in Bangkok. How do I know? Because I pass the tree every day and I see it’s ever-changing and growing wardrobe.
I’ve never been one for fashion. My getting dressed routine in the morning consists of me asking ‘is it comfortable’, ‘does it still fit’ and ‘can I get away with this at my age?’ Usually, I’m more than ok with this, but it’s one thing to be upstaged by people looking impeccable in the latest fashion, it’s another to be upstaged by a tree. As anyone who’s spent any length of time will tell you, many trees in Bangkok are better dressed than the people passing by. What I don’t know about the latest trends on rooted timber isn’t worth knowing. But why is it that some Bangkok trees can look better than me? Why do they have more outfits that a fashion model?
If you want to know what trees are wearing this season, we may have the answer in Bangkok because I have found the best-dressed tree in Bangkok, maybe in all of Thailand. Who knows, perhaps this is the best-dressed tree the whole world.
A Tree With The Best Attire
But the tree can’t take any credit for it’s unique fashion sense so how has this tree earned such a title? The short answer is ‘superstition’. Underneath the kaleidoscope of colourful outfits is a very big and very old tree and the reason for its snazzy attire has everything to do with its size and its age. Underneath the kaleidoscope of colourful outfits is a huge and ancient tree and the reason for its striking attire has everything to do with its size and its age.
Timber With Spirit
The tree you can (almost) see under the dresses in the photo is called Hopea Ordorata or Ta-Khian, and according to Thai folklore, they are a very sacred tree. The Hopea tree is believed to contain a female spirit called Nang Ta-Khian, and she manifests wearing traditional Thai attire, hence the array of female clothing. Any trees where a spirit is deemed to reside become an object of pilgrimage and the clothes are an offering to the female spirit.
The offerings are left in the hope that the Nang Ta-Khian will bestow good luck, so this tree must be considered very lucky to be covered in so many dresses. In recent times the Nang Ta-Khian and all her finery are believed to be particularly good at endowing luck when it comes to lottery numbers, so I can only imagine someone who made the pilgrimage to this tree then promptly hit the jackpot!
A Cup Of Tree
It’s not only the dresses that this tree is given in the hope of spreading good luck, but drinks are also served around the clock just in case Nang Ta-Khian gets a bit thirsty. Again, let’s be honest, if you had to live in a tree, you’d probably have slightly dry lips and what better way to quench your thirst than a nice bottle of fizzy red pop.
Whether you believe in this superstition or not, their can be no denying the tree’s style and crown as the best dressed in the world.
And whether you believe in the Nang Ta-Khian or not, nobody can deny that someone did really well from this tree. So the only questions that remain are what dress size is the Nang Ta-Khain and where can I purchase a lottery ticket?!