Trip Start Dec 28, 2004
272Trip End Ongoing
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The main attraction to cambodia is a place called angkor wat outside of the town of Siem Reap. angkor wat is a buddhist temple complex that covers a huge chunk of the country side and has over 1000 seperate temples. The main temple is angkor wat while the others are a little lesser known. so the big thing is to see the sunrise over the angkor wat temple and to do this u need to leave siem reap at about 530am....no way was i gonna ever make it or even think about it......then two very cute swedish girls invited me to go with them and if there is a way to say no to swedish girls please email me cuz i haven't found it yet and thats how i found myself driving through the cambodian countryside at 6 in the damn morning. the sunrise WAS spectacular and was one of the better moments of this trip for sure. we then spent the rest of the day exploring and climbing up pyramid like temples that are overgrown by the jungle......by midday i had the both of them humming the indiana jones theme. we came across 3 aussie couples that were in their 40's at around 11am and it was there first stop and we told them we had been here since around 530 and they looked at us like we were nuts. as we waited to climb the mountain to see the sunset (dont ask) we were talking to one of the MANY children who try and sell u various pieces of crap. he was 13 he said but looked about 10...and had an obvious crush on my swedish friends. to give the kid credit, he was hitting on them pretty well LOL. they went off to look at somoething and he came over to me and says "when u get to top of mountain tell her i like her." how can u not play along? "ok no problem...which one do u like?" he thinks long and hard and then says "i want them both" which about makes me fall out of the chair "no no you are too small to have 2".....and to this he says "i am small but clever". my faith in humanity has been born anew.
angkor wat is hard to explain but is amazing all the same....used to be a hindu temple but then was turned over to the buddhists......its a very strange mix of carvings in the stone. with vishnu doing battle with the demons and then the buddha faces everywhere. we stayed and explored until sunset which is no small feat considering it averages about 104 degrees with 80% humidity.....i felt like hell afterwards to be honest. i took lots of pics so when i upload them you will have a better sense of what im talkin about. amazingly the khemer rouge tried to dismatle even this........even though its stood forever just about....the country is def a mixture of craziness and beauty.....im worrying about avian flu.....and im told not to go to some part of the country because the landmines are still bad.....its a very surreal experience.
im now in penom pehn the capital....me and the swedes took the worst bus trip ever....no a/c and packed to the gills wtih locals....with khemer music blasting as we struggled to overtake the water buffalo. the city is actually pretty nice considering it was abandoned and half destroyed during the civil war in the 70's. the 3 of us went to s-21 today, which is their genocide museum....a high school turned prison where they tortured 20,000 people....there were 7 survivors. we also went to the killing fields and im not really ready to talk to much about either one. i need at least a few days to think what i saw and when i do i'll write. also i took a lot of pictures but most of them are pretty disturbing and sadly familiar to what happened in europe. i'll talk more later just know i love u all.