Friday, February 11, 2011


Sunday, April 8, 2007 CAMBODIA

Easter Sunday and not able to attend church; it’s very hard to arrange when you are in an organized tour. We’re leaving at 8 am this morning but the wakeup call was still at 6 am. We had a few extra minutes to check the internet in the lobby. Everyone brought there umbrellas as it rained last night. It is still overcast but not raining; very humid.

Our first stop this morning was out in the temple area where we climbed aboard the elephants for a $10.00 ride down the road. Lots of fun and great photo opportunities as we lumbered along the edge of the forest; I found it more comfortable to let go of the frame of the chair and roll with the elephant. Howard stayed home this morning as he was having some food reactions so Betty shared an elephant with Christa. Well worth the extra fee and definitely a highlight of our adventure in Cambodia.

Then we drove over to the Hot Air Balloon and had our second adventure of the day. The balloon was tethered and rose about two hundred feet into the air. If the sky had been clear it would have had great views of Angkor Wat and the surrounding moat but we could barely see the temple. It probably would have been much better last night but the winds prohibited our trip for safety reasons.

Our third adventure for this morning was a visit to “The Killing Fields”; now a monastery that was formerly a prison by the Khmer Rouge forces led by Pol Pot during the 1970’s wars. People were taken there and killed generally because they were too educated. Several different memorials held the bones of people who died in this prison. We encouraged Nang to tell us about his experiences during the war and he told us about a celebration that he was attending when he was about fourteen years old. He knew something was wrong when the Pol Pot soldiers asked everyone to get on the trucks and go to another celebration (for the good harvest); he took off, swam across the river and ran thirteen miles into the jungle where he hid for several days. He later found out that nearly everyone at the party had been killed. He lost his grandfather, two sisters and a brother during this period of time. His wife lost all of her family.

Back to hotel for an hour and picked up Howard for our lunch at a local restaurant. We ate at the Angkor Cashew Restaurant, a French Restaurant that was on the second floor of an open-air building that reminded us all of Hawaii. The building was surrounded by Mango Trees and one Cashew Tree. We were able to take photos of the fruit and nut growing on the tree. The fruit is yellow and the hull holding the nut is at the bottom of the fruit. Always learning new things!

Enjoyed many different dishes and for dessert our fresh fruit including the Dragon Fruit that we so enjoy. I’ll try to find that one in the USA when we get home. We then had a short break at the hotel before heading out for our last adventure.

Just before we left the hotel for the afternoon event; I developed stomach problems. Went on the bus and half way enjoyed the very long and bumpy bus ride (over twenty miles) to tour the Pre Rup Temple. Along the way we stopped for photos at the Banteay Srei Temple. Coming back we stopped to visit the Sugar Palm Village where Nang showed us how they collect and make the sugar from the palm trees. Nang was willing to stop for anyone who wanted to climb to the top of Banteay Srei Temple but Christa was gracious and knew I needed to return to the hotel and so we continued back to the hotel.

Tonight they are at dinner at the Neary Khmer Restaurant in town for the final dinner. I decided to opt out of this adventure.

[ I went to bed about 8 pm, unable to keep anything down, I felt like something the “cat drug home through the dirt”! However in between visits to the bathroom I did manage to finish my Journal and back it up to a flash drive. So the next morning after eating some bread with my coffee I used the hotel internet and managed to send the journal before leaving Cambodia. ]

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