Skip to content

Phnom Penh

January 26, 2017
by

Today was a day of extremes.  We started off driving  to our first tour of the killing fields and prison S21.  While the distance by miles is not far, with the horrendous traffic it took us 1 1/2 hours to get there.  There are only 16 million people in Cambodia compared to over 60 million in Vietnam, there are still a lot of people, not to mention the myriad of scooters and in Phnom Penh, more cars.traffic-cambodia2

The killing fields and prison tour were not exactly uplifting.  I am sorry to admit that I had very little understanding of the history of these events. I was just graduating from high school and off to college and it was really not on my horizon, nor did I learn much about it through school.  It was another horrifying example of mans inhumanity to man.  killing-field-tour-of-skulls2 prison-cambodia1 prison-cambodia2

We did not take a lot of photos at these stops, and it was fairly subdued group as we headed back into town for lunch back on the boat.

The afternoon could not have been more different.  Our first stop was the Royal Palace, the home to the King of Cambodia.  The King was in residence, but his private quarters are not on the tour.  The grounds are large with beautiful gardens and elaborate buildings and art.palace-cambodia2206 palace-cambodia2208 palace-in-cambodia-07palace-in-cambodia-09palace-in-cambodia05palace-in-cambodia08

One of the most elaborate places was the Silver Pagoda with a floor made of silver tiles and inside is a huge collection of statues–many of them buddhas, some made of solid gold and inlayed with diamonds.  We could not take pictures inside the buildings but we did get many outside.

We left there and had a quick stop at the Cambodian museum.  Many statues and artifacts awaited us. We had to rush a bit since the museum closed at 5 pm.cambodia-museum-05 cambodia-museum-08 cambodia-museum-14cambodia-museum-02cambodia-museum-13cambodia-museum-11cambodia-museum-elephant

At both locations they had beautiful tropical plants with some we knew and others we did not including hedges of ixoraixora2-1 ylang ylang, ylang-ylang-museum2 pentacme trees,

pen2  Murraya trees murraya-flower and a few we haven’t identified.unknown-plant

Everything we see is interesting and the views from the bus help  us get a better understanding of the culture as well. phnom-penn-city04 phnom-penn-city13 pigs-in-truck pineapple-carving-phnmom-pen1

Some of us also had to try to blend in at the museum.pigs-in-truck jean-and-neva-museum diane-and-bethjanet-and-harry-museum

It was a full day and the temperature was in the low 90’s.  Back on the boat we had a demonstration of local dances and music before a traditional Cambodian meal.

 

One Comment leave one →
  1. Patricia Freeman permalink
    January 26, 2017 6:19 pm

    Well, there’s a fair amount of understanding of the history of the period. I would start with talking with the many American boys who were there at the time. Eastern Cambodia was killing us.

    I tend to think of it as man’s inhumanity to me .

    The Ideology of Pol Pot spread like wildfire after we left. It filled the void of a desperate people, and it was the young that it infected. A nine year old boy would kill you in a heartbeat.

    Question. Where did that hatred go? It’s a mystery I think. I tend to bristle at the it’s ok now . I mean these people emptied their cities to kill all of them.

    The killing fields are real and are replicated all over the world. We tend to become numb.

    Burley Freeman

    117 Caroline Acres Road

    Hot Springs, AR 71913

    501-525-0432 (home)

    732-910-8453 (cell)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: