Last day in Angkor

Angkor Travel Blog

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No, no bracelets. No scarves. No FLutes. Not even for our mums.
Iain was still feeling rough.  We were kind of planing a quieter sort of day, and ended up having rather more of an adventure than we had counted on...

It was a predictaible enugh morning.  We visited a few more temples, all of which I have now forgotten the names of, and will be grateful for any help.

The first one we shall call "the temple with the cool elephants."  Climbing a lot more steps, and in my case trying to cling to teh shade, Iain and I wandered happily about the terraces. The elephants were very cool, and I liked them a lot.  Then we went to "really high temple with the great views of the jungle."  It was very impressive.  We got chatting to a slightly less pushy sales kid, who once he figured out we weren't buying anything, asked if we had any coins.
  he was fascinated by the twenty pence coin I found in the depts of my bag; Cambodia doesn't issue coins any more, and he'd learned about the queen somewhere.  I was certainly impressed he got all the things he was selling up to the top of the temple coz I was going up on hands and knees a lot of the time!

We went on to "the temple with the pools,"  which I loived.  It had been used as a sort of hospital, where the priests would advise you which one of the fountains would cure you.  The statue of the horse with the people clinging to it was very impressive, and comes froma a legend about a horse rescuing some merchants from an ogre. 

The last temple we went to, I almost missed. I was walking along the causeway and one particular child would not leave me alone.
  For twenty minutes - ne exageration - she followed me around trying to get me to buy some bracelets. I know that the country is very poor and that people have to make a living somehow, but even so, I was getting genuinely angry after fifteen minutes and didn't realise that there was a whole other temple behind the gateway because she was in front of it, trying to sell me bracelets.  Wy didn't I give in?  Coz about ten more kids would have swoo[ped with slightly different bracelets if I had, that's why.  And I didn't want any bracelets.  Or postcards.  or flutes.  You can't give all of them a dollar to go away - there are just too many.  And actually, feeling guilty about it just makes you crosser. 

Just as I was going back to the tuktuk, Iain called me to see the real temple, and we noticed the tuktuk driver coming down with our bags.
Steep climbs
  it turned out he had never seen htis temple, and he asked if we minded him coming with us.  It was really nice to talk to him properly as he was normally quite shy.  He was about our age, and was looking forward to going to see his family in Phnom Penh for All Souls Day, which happens this time of year ane is a big family celebration like Christmas in Cambodia.  he also pointed out some of the characters from the myths to us. 

The tuktuk driver took us to a quiet restaurant in the temple compund, where we could eat lunch without having to say "no thank you" to a horde of children.  Lunch was really excellent.  I had some nice fish stew and they served traditional rice sticky sweets, which were slightly gloopy with crunchy centres, adn very nice.
 

After that, teh tuktuk driver took us to see a floating village. We negotiated on the price of the boat for once, because by this time we were starting to get the hang of the bartering thing.  the boat took us to a Cambodian floating village (apparently a lot of the villages are ethnic Vietnamese; they told us that you can tell because they wear conical hats rather than Kroma, and the boats have eyes).  The weather was overcast, but the village was very pretty.  There was a temple on a little hill, and the houses had patches of garden for farming water plants.  there were nets drying over railings for fishing. 

The boat driver took us out onto Tonle Sap to see the sunset.  This was a Bad Idea.  The weather closed in, and we could see rain on the horizon.
Elephant
  Unfortunately, we had a bit of a misunderstanding where we were saying to go back to shore and somehow the boat driver thought we wanted to stay on the lake, and started tgrying to moor us to a submerged tree.  The wind whipped up. The rain we could see on the horizon moved down the lake, driven by the winds, and lashed the boat, and the gentle swell was suddenly almost as big as the little boat.  We later learned that this was the very tail end of a cyclone, thankfully mostly spent but still dangerous to a pleasure boat caught in the open.  The boat rocked dangerously, almost side on at some points, adn I could almost hear my father cursing me for being stupid enough to take a pleasure cruiser into open water, even to see a sunset on a large lake.
Fishing boat on tonle sap


The boat driver turned the little boat's stern into the wind and started towards shelter.  it was pitching all over the place, and I helped the tuktuk driver pull down the canvas sides of the boat to keep the water out of the bottom of the vessel.  i still think that this was perfectly sensible, but Iain has teased me about my abiliuty to "close the curtains in teh face of danger" ever since. 

By the time we putted back n it was getting dark, and we had never been gladder to see the little tuktuk.  We ate at the hotel that night. 
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No, no bracelets.  No scarves. No …
No, no bracelets. No scarves. No…
Steep climbs
Steep climbs
Elephant
Elephant
Fishing boat on tonle sap
Fishing boat on tonle sap
Sacred pools and the horse that re…
Sacred pools and the horse that r…
Garuda
Garuda
temples
temples
Apsara
Apsara
Boats
Boats
Floating village
Floating village
Floating village
Floating village
Watt on a hill
Watt on a hill
The storm breaking
The storm breaking
Floating village
Floating village
Angkor
photo by: ulysses