“I feel secure when I stay close to a river. A river is like a home. When in doubt, I will always begin again at a pier—somewhere.”

The Chao Phraya River is a stream of life and a guiding compass.

Kampanath Ruangkittivilas, or Zack, is an artist who really loves acting and dancing so much that he promises himself, “if I can survive pulmonary edema and have a chance to dance again, I won’t waste my time on anything—even shyness. Indeed, I know from when I was young that I enjoy dancing. When I have to dance, I will dance and won’t care about others’ opinion. Sometimes, I was invited to dance in public; some people looked at me as if I had been a freak. But I thought I couldn’t stop them from looking at me. So I chose to care about those who admired me and appreciated my work rather than to care about those who didn’t understand or just passed by.”

Some people may not know that Zack grew up and has developed a close bond with a river throughout his life. Because his house is in the vicinity of Bang O sub-district around the Chao Phraya River, his appreciation for the river is no less than anyone else’s. He compares the Chao Phraya River to an artery which nourishes the lives of people living along the river. Moreover, he says, “I feel secure when I stay close to a river. A river is like a home.”

If he gets lost, he chooses to begin again at a pier—somewhere by the banks of the Chao Phraya. He depends on the river to be a compass guiding him home. But when he gets lost on a road, he’ll get confused and feel at a loss.

If he had nothing left in his life, he would wish that he could stay close to the river. And he is sure that he will survive without starving himself to death. His words make us understand a word like roots or beginning—clearly again.