Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Siem Reap Part Deux

Seriously, everyone come here. I was dying to see angkor wat and all the rest, but admit that small-town-in-cambodia filled my mind with thoughts of truly roughing it. this is the cutest little town ever. we just ate breakfast at a little place which is clearly run by ex-pats and has the best selection of pastries and a really nice menu overall.

This meal was important for two reasons. First of all, the fact that we had slept a total of six hours since we got to Southeast Asia caught up with us yesterday. After an afternoon of temple-sightseeing (including the 'tomb raider'temple, so called because it was filmed there) we fell unconscious and woke only to discuss the fact that going to dinner didn't seem worth it. So we slept from about 6pm last night until about 6am today. There is a free breakfast in our hotel, but I have to say the included breakfasts at our hotels here and in bangkok have been humorous at best, scary at worst. Both have a buffet set out with the most random assortment of unappetizing food you have ever seen. There were samovars with processed lunch meat sitting in some kind of liquid. There were plates with some kind of orange gumdrop candy. There are noodles and fried rice, which are definitely your safest bet, but even those are not that appetizing compared the food anywhere outside the hotel, so it made sense to go elsewhere.

OK, so for the afternoon sightseeing description-- the morning temples we saw yesterday were both Hindu temples, though all temples have been converted over to being buddhist given the religious shift in the country over time. The afternoon temples were both buddhist. The 'tomb raider' temple, actually called Ta Prum (sp?), is a ruin but is one of the most beautiful things i've ever seen. These huge trees which our tour guide claimed were fig (but do fig trees grow to be hundreds of feet tall?) have basically attacked the standing structures and grown into, around, and on top of them. They have these expansive root systems which are tall and rugged looking, and these crack through the walls and then the huge trunks shoot out from them. It's like nothing I've ever seen. The last temple we saw yesterday is known for the buddha faces carved all over it. The four temples we saw here were all so different in style, and were all so breathtaking. This place is really great.

Finally, I hope you three readers appreciate the fact that because of this blog, my attempts to keep a travel journal have been useless so far. It's hard to have the energy to write again, but I do feel the need to keep a record that's more focused on what I actually saw than the random musings I tend to post here.

Allegedly, in Hanoi, where I fly tonight, I can get the pictures off my camera and onto a CD. So there may be photos in this blog's future.

Yes, weeks, not months.


Blogger Ruthie said...

Jule, if you get a chance to go to Halong Bay (right by Hanoi), GO. It's breathtakingly lovely, and the fishermen there will make you the kind of fresh seafood lunch my dreams are made of. ENJOY :)

10:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jules, Keep these coming! My big retirement present to myself is my long dreamed of trip to Luang Prabang, Lao, Vietnam from Hanoi to Saigon (including Halong Bay, Hue and Hoi An) and Siem Reap. I can hardly wait to talk to you about this all when you get back. Enjoy Beijing, too, and do go to the famous duck place. It's worth it. Mary

12:48 AM  

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