Sunday, November 4, 2018

Bayon Temple, Angkor Thom-my Favorite

After we visited the famous Angkor Wat we visited what I thought was the more impressive Bayon Temple.  Bayon Temple has 54 towers representing the 54 provinces of Cambodia.  Its very sad, other countries (see below Japan) have helped Cambodia clear mines from the surrounding land.  War with other countries & civil war left many mines, killing many over hundreds of years.  Without help from other countries to restore the temples, they would have been left as over-grown deserted stones.

This represents a famous king dying and going to Nirvana.  No more life cycle of reincarnation as another being.  No more suffering,

Moon explained the story on the walls.  He even said this is the story of China coming to Thailand.  They even have slanty eyes like you David.

Oh we had so much fun! Especially with the dumb elephant pants which turned out to be very hot.

Always time for one last selfie.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Angkor Wat, the Moment We've Been Waiting For

Angkor Wat, most famously known as the location set for Laura Croft, Tomb Raider, was built in 1100 as a Hindu temple.  It became Buddhist in the 16th century.  Its the only temple that faces west--symbolizing the end of life.  The King is buried here facing west, versus East which symbolizes the beginning of life/day.  Angkor Wat is a World Heritage Site, famous for the iconic mirror image in the pond.  Normally the tour is a sunrise viewing to see the golden reflection in the pond but since sunshine was not forecast, we headed out at 8am.

Everyone is wearing the elephant pants

Walked across a floating bridge to get there

Waited in line 15 minutes to go up and in.  Steps so steep one woman sat & cried on the way down until someone showed her how to go down backwards.

Once up there, there was a lot to see.  Temples are places of worship and holiness.  Meant to be hard to climb up in to.

I forget what these beautiful women/Goddesses symbolize but they are everywhere.   Look at the detail, amazing it has lasted all this time.

View from above

One of the three towers

Learned about the five commitments of Buddhists:  no killing, stealing, cheating, lying, sexual misconduct, alcohol.

So long Angkor Wat

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Topping off Day 1 in Siem Reap 9.21.18

Day One was Action Packed.  Here's a few pictures of our adventure after Bantay Srei.

You can tell which are restored vs. original Buddha faces by how good they look.  

This is the city gate of Angkor Tom.  Look how ominous the faces on the gates are.

One of our highlights was the sunset (no sun-so just mid-afternoon) boat ride around the Angkor Tom moat.   Think we have enough food?

Our hotel had a traditional show, then were able to go up and take a pix with the dancers.

Special crab dinner

The show was up above the pool behind us.

After dinner I got a special heat compression massage, good for circulation.  David went to bed tired.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Banteay Sameri & the Womens Citadel Banteay Srei. September 22, 2018

After we visited Ta-Prohm we went to Banteay Samrei.  We learned so many interesting things along the way.  Years ago temples were places not only of worship but education and togetherness.  They were little cities unto themselves.  It took years to build temples and they were not built by slaves but by the devout, everyday citizens.  You could tell what year they were built in by their stone, wood or sandstone material.
We got a glimpse of Buddhist culture in each of the temples  The four tenets of Buddhism are charity, sympathy, compassion and equanimity (control, calmness, not greedy).  Beliefs to live by.

Look how high the people are, they climbed those steps.

We took these steps which were steep but not as steep as the original steps in front.

David next to 1 of the 3 towers

Beautiful view from way up top.

Lunch was the famous Amok.

On to the W omens Citadel

Walking through this temple was walking through a land before time.  You could imagine which room this was, which room that was, see the library (every temple has a library) & imagine every day life here.

This is the famous Naga (half bird/half something else)

This is perhaps my favorite picture, a Monk was showing a group around.  Suddenly, he took the top of his robe off and shook it out.  Beautiful.