The port of Laem Chabang is a popular stopping off port for many cruise ships which visit Thailand each year.
Cunard, one of the world’s leading operators of passenger ships for more than 175 years, each year has a ship which arrives in port as part of its world cruise.
The world famous QEII was a regular visitor, but since retiring in 2008 the Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria and the newest ship in the fleet, Queen Elizabeth, have all dropped anchor in Thailand’s largest port.
More food than many children had ever seen.
The most recent visitor was the Queen Mary 2, which was half way through its one hundred and twenty day world cruise. Most visitors disembark and visit local attractions here in Pattaya, but many stay on board where they are invited to the ship’s theatre to watch a show titled ‘A Taste of Thailand’.
The show is performed each year by the children and students from the Father Ray Foundation, who are invited on board for a feast cooked by the chefs and a tour of the ship before the curtain is raised for the start of the show.
The blind students moved many to tears.
Several hundred guests filled the theatre, and the opening performance came from the youngsters living at the Father Ray Drop-In Center who performed a dance routine to a popular pop song. They were followed by the traditional Isaan dancers from the Children’s Village before the toddlers from the Day Care Center arrived on stage to dance, though several just stood staring into the audience.
The boys from the Children’s Home boxed with smiles on their faces.
Other performances included a magic show, wheelchair dancing, a Muay Thai exhibition and a traditional Thai dance routine.
The final act on stage was the choir from the Pattaya School for the Blind, who sang three songs, but it was their rendition of Amazing Grace that saw many in the audience wiping a tear or two.
Not only did the guests on board experience Thai culture without even leaving the ship, the children from the Father Ray Foundation had a day they will remember forever.
The excellent wheelchair dancers.
The teenagers with special needs performed a wonderful magic show.
The youngsters from the Drop-In Center.
Traditional Isaan dancers from the Children’s Village.
Waiting to climb on board.
While some danced, others just stared into the audience.
The girls from the Children’s Home performed a traditional candle dance.