Shell shock: Giant turtle roadside rescue fuels lottery frenzy in northeast Thailand

Photo: by Tanguy Sauvin, on Pexels.

A giant turtle was discovered crawling on a road by a young man who decided to take it home, sparking a flurry of lottery number predictions among the local villagers in northeast Thailand. The unusual occurrence took place in the Nong Thep community, Sri Narong District, Surin province.

The 28 year old man, Kaewprasert, was en route to buy some beer when he encountered an unidentified object on the road. On closer inspection, he found a giant turtle, weighing approximately 15 kilogrammes, about to descend into a canal.

He quickly lifted the creature and brought it home, where it soon attracted the attention of neighbours who had never seen such a massive turtle, usually only visible in zoos.

For some villagers, the turtle’s arrival was seen as a sign of good luck and wealth.

Several villager gamblers bathed the turtle and performed a wai khru ritual, using talcum powder to mark the turtle’s shell in the hope of predicting winning lottery numbers. Each person saw different numbers, with some even claiming to see clear images of revered figures.

According to Kaewprasert, he was surprised to spot the turtle on the road near a sugarcane plantation. He was startled to see the creature lifting its head and preparing to enter the canal.

After bringing the turtle home, news quickly spread throughout the community. Lottery enthusiasts flocked to his house to see the extraordinary creature, hoping it would bring good fortune and longevity, much like the turtle itself, reported Sanook.

Noi, a 68 year old resident of house number 5 in the Nong Thep village, prepared five and eight incense sticks for a luck and fortune ritual. She also asked her grandchildren to pray to the turtle for good fortune and longevity. Villagers gradually came to light nine incense sticks each for good luck.

Noi shared that she had a dream the night before where she received numerous items at her house, which she interpreted as a sign of impending good fortune. The arrival of the turtle, which weighed around 11.8 kilogrammes, seemed to confirm her belief.

The villagers used the turtle to predict lottery numbers, spotting the numbers 325, 118, 18, 81, 11, 52, 25, 32, 23 on the incense sticks they lit. They plan to use these numbers for the upcoming lottery draw on October 16.

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Samantha Rose

Samantha was a successful freelance journalist who worked with international news organizations before joining Thaiger. With a Bachelor's degree in Journalism from London, her global perspective on news and current affairs is influenced by her days in London, Singapore, and Bangkok. She now uncovers general stories related to Thailand.