National Geographic : 1967 Jul
Masked gunman sprays a Datsun sedan at Siam Motors and Nissan Co., Ltd., in Bang kok, where workmen assemble cars and trucks from components made in Japan. Factories spring up in former rice fields on the outskirts of the capital as the Thai de mand more consumer goods. Painting lacquer bowls, an artisan of Chiang Mai uses her hand as a brush. For their time-honored trade, women first weave bamboo strips into bowls and trays. Then, as on an assembly line, the wares move from house to house, and neighbors cover the frames with a black mixture of clay and lac, a locally harvested resin. Other hands sand and polish the surface. Finally, layers of red paint build a hard, smooth finish. With feet for a vise, a carver chisels a teak elephant, symbol of Thailand. From the handicraft villages near Chiang Mai also come bronze images of the Lord Buddha, temple bells, cloth dolls, pottery, fabrics, and silverware made from old Burmese coins.