A replica of the sacred Buddha image Phra Phutthasothon arrived in Samut Prakan yesterday on its journey to Bangkok. It left Chachoengsao on Monday and journeyed by boat down the Bang Pakong River (where I went to watch the dolphins) and along the northern coastline of the Gulf of Thailand. It then entered the Chao Phraya River at Paknam on Tuesday night. Many local people came to pay respect to this Buddha image which is one of the most revered in the country. There is a legend that Phra Phutthasothon is one of three brothers that fled from the ravages of war during the Ayutthaya period. They just got up one day and jumped into the river. One of them ended up at Samut Songkram. Another ended up here in Samut Prakan. The third arrived in Chachoengsao. In each case, the Buddha images only came to shore when the local villagers paid the proper respect. A nine day celebration will take place at Sanam Luang starting Friday.