Saturday, December 14, 2013

Cambodia Trip 1.4f

On that first day visiting the temples in and around Angkor Wat and Angkor Thom, Bunleng and I had a late lunch. While we ate, I tried a “Bayon” beer in honor of the temple I had visited hours before. Then, we headed back towards Siem Reap. Man, was I tired! Not sure of how many miles I walked that day, but it felt like around ten; it could have been more...

... But, Bunleng had one more stop in store for me. Unannounced he stopped at a relatively small temple not far from Wat Kesaranam. He explained that the temple had a little monument for the local people in that area who had fallen victims to “the Pol Pot Regime” and that I could visit or not.

Of course I visited. It was right before us. There was a glassed-in monument filled with bones and skulls of local people who had been dug up out of the local “Killing Fields.” You know, it’s one thing to see a picture of a bunch of bones, but it’s another thing to see them in real time with your own eyes. It was very moving and made the tragedy of the Kampuchean Revolution so much more tangible. Not far away was a glassed-in bulletin board of pictures and captions from the Khmer Rouge period, some of which I’d seen before in books and many of which I had not.

I never got around to asking Bunleng about his always referring to “the Pol Pot Regime” rather than “Khmer Rouge,” “Democratic Kampuchea,” “DK” or even “the tme of the Killing Fields.” I thought it curious, but accurate.

You KNOW I made a donation at that temple.

(The below is slightly off topic, though contains similar elements. See Wiki explanation of the song below the video...)

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