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The Adventures of Whales 4 1/2 months with a newly wed couple in Southeast Asia Jan 9th 07 to May 17th 07

Angkor Temples

CAMBODIA | Thursday, 29 March 2007 | Views [1382]

   We finally made it to Cambodia. The border crossing was a little annoying due to corrupt males in power. The man at the counter said it cost 1000baht ($30USD) to get our visas processed in 3 minutes. Or we could follow the government posted sign directly above his head that said $20 and have it back in 3 hours. So we got a group of travelers together and laughed loudly for an hour, hoping to make them uncomfortable enough to bring our documents back, but it didn't work. Being loud is considered out of place. We waited almost 3 hours. After they finished lunch, a man brought out all of our visas at the same time, even though others hadn't waited as long. Foolishness.

   We all jumped into a bus to a taxi stand where we shared a 3.5 hour ride dodging 6 foot in diameter pot holes almost a foot deep. The road is purposely kept in a state of decay because the commissioner who says which roads get paved, is being paid off by the airline companies so more people will fly. More Foolishness. We stayed in Siem Reip, home of the Angkor Temples. There were so many temples and the tickets were expensive so we just saw Angkor Wat and Angkor Thom. These palaces were built in 8000AD and each king had a hand in putting afew more up. The ones we saw were practically in ruins. People have been coming in and desecrating the whole place, even using it as a toilet. Some of the temples were originally built for hindu religions and the buddhist took them over, recarving their own idolic images.

 

  On our way to Angkor Thom, we saw the Buddah Monkey (aka fattest monkey we have ever seen, possibly a rival gang banger of P.P. Chub Masta Fat) All this ape did was sit on the side of the street and collect fruit from the tourists. Another more fit monkey decided to climb up my leg and onto my shoulder to see what i had in a bag. We didn't know they were that friendly and would not try to bite us until a baby monkey perched itself on my other shoulder and discretely tried to look at my face. We had  alot of fun playing with them after that. And it was certainly one of the highlights to our trip so far.

   The next day we took a cramped, sweaty, bumpy bus ride to Phnoem Pehn, the capital. Here we have been relaxing. Cambodia has been the hottest, most dry place yet. People close up shop from 11 to 2 because of the heat, so we got a room with a TV to entertain ourselves. Unfortunately, the power goes out for hours at a time about 3 times a day.

   Besides the greeting we had getting into Cambodia, the Cambodias them selves have been extremely friendly and seem to have a progressive attitude. We have seen a lot of road and building constrution. The price that is quoted is normally a very good one and leaves little room or need to bargain. Most people are looking for the repeat busness instead of the big sale. I read an add in a tourist magizine writen by the local goverment, that asked tourist to not give money or food to childern or woman, because this would encourage them to stay on the streets instead of becoming part of a goverment program aimed at helping them.

  Cambodia also has a bit of a scary aspect. On the drive to the Capital there where many anti gun signs, and in the lobby of our hotel there are a few adds for gun, rocket, and granda test ranges. I think there is an ample supply of arms, and with the mix of poverty, it's a bit unnerving. Books recommend not to go out late at night and after 11pm the front door of our hotel is locked and an armed guard sits out front all night. That in addition with the fact that there are thousands and thousands of undetinated land mines all over the country makes Cambodia a little scary.    -But Hey, if anyone wants a "Danger Land Mines, Cambodia" t-shirt let me know.

Love D&E  

Ps We could not put up all of our pic's because the connection was to slow.

Tags: Sightseeing

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