the Southern Gate of Bayon Temple
At 5am I reached over to switch off the alarm. The pitch black darkness was pure — unbroken by street lights, traffic noise, or industry. I lay back in bed as the disorientation of deep sleep gradually lifted.
Where am I? Soft bed…nice sheets…must be a hotel. And if we can afford a hotel…hmmmm…..Southeast Asia.
Too quiet for Vietnam….we’re not in Laos….I don’t hear any chickens.
Ok, must be Cambodia then…..Siem Reap? Yep, Siem Reap. Continue reading
Sunrise at Angkor Wat
We left Phnom Penh early the next morning aboard a bus bound for Siem Reap. It was one of the nicest and cleanest buses we’ve ever been on. Wireless was included (although it didn’t work), along with movies, air conditioning, and even seat belts. It only cost $10 for the six-hour journey, but the trade-off was frequent and unnecessary stops at restaurants and shops owned by the bus company, which extended the trip by an extra hour and a half. Still, it was a comfortable and safe, minus the moment we fishtailed to a stop in order to avoid a stray cow wandering on the highway. Continue reading
Genocide Victims at the Killing Fields
From peaceful Laos we moved on to frenetic Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia. We needed a break from the tourist trail, so we spent our first night chilling at Flicks, a hipster movie theater tucked into a converted house near the Mekong River. There were a few rows of chairs, but Mandy and I preferred sprawling out on a mattress in the front. Drinks and coconut milk curries were hustled up from the bar & restaurant below as Django Unchanged (amazing movie) played on the big screen. Every five minutes, the words “thank you for your consideration” flashed across the screen, which, Mandy informed me, meant we were watching a bootlegged copy of the version provided to Oscar judges. Oh well, it wouldn’t be Southeast Asia without a little movie piracy, right? Continue reading