Thursday, December 20, 2007
The Temples of Cambodia
Today we went to Angkor Wat and the temples surrounding it. The temple complex of Angkor Wat is the largest religious structure in the world. We arrived long before sunrise and watched as the sky slowly performed a reverse sunset, revealed the massive structure and burned off the mist surrounding it. I wish I could say it was magical but the thousands of other tourists who had arrived at the same time as us to crowding the whole place took something away from it. These photos do not reflect the sheer numbers of Japanese and French gawkers milling about the place because Mia and I are very good at excluding them from our shots. It's also hard to take yourself back in time when you are constantly being bombarded by children pushing postcards, fake art, water, scarfs and assorted other junk into your face and whining, "Waaaant a BooooOOOOk? Miiiiisteeer! You waaaaant-a PoooostcaaaaAAArd? Waaaant some Wateeeer? Mister, hey I talk to you! Hey!"
A few of the temples we managed to find seem to have been forgotten over time and are overgrown with foliage and spiderwebs. However, all the joys of finding something we had all to ourselves came with the added difficulty of trying to explore with a mask of webs filled with mosquitoes stuck to our faces. I just couldn't find it in myself to pick up a stick and start slashing the webs down as we walked. The spiders had a pretty cushy life going and who am I to ruin it. We swam back into the sea of junk peddlers after a short time.
Angkor Wat at sunrise.
The jungle slowly reclaims a temple near Siam Reap.
The early morning sun burns through the mist in one of the courtyards of Angkor Wat.
Even at a great distance, Joe is able to add drama to a photo by the use of body language.
A series of doors which lead to a turn and then... another series of doors.
Joe explores a temple off the beaten path.
Joe admires ceiling murals inside an old temple.
Angkor Wat reflected in a lake. The lake might be filled with crocodiles! Or lake bears!
This shirt is getting full of holes, so enjoy its presence in our photos while you can.
If you are going to be getting a custom made calendar with your own photos this year, I would recommend including this one.
Mia peaks around a corned in Angkor Wat. Every surface in the temple is or was as intricately carved as this wall.
Also we uploaded more pictures below.