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January 26, 2011

Part II - Cambodia Condensed - A “Two-a-Day" Series of Our Time in Cambodia:

Mom @ Angkor Wat! (Photo: Schwary)

DAY 3  - CAMBODIA (Siem Reap):
We woke in our underwear around 9 a.m. and hit the reset button on the alarm clock labeled, Yesterday. Boarded the same tuk-tuk, with the same captain, Wey. Did you remember it’s pronounced like, w-a-y? No? Kindly reread the first sentence of the last paragraph. Again, we paid the same 20 bucks, but this time with Hamilton’s instead of Jackson's. Took the same security pic but this time with my dorky Thailand hat and a bit less amazement as the day before. I like dorky things sometimes. It reminds me that being cool is always that cool, to the contrary, it can be quite boring.  We passed on the temples we examined yesterday, played with the ones we skipped the day before. Crazy impressed is an understatement. Tried to make sense out of how the trees that weigh a several tons can dump themselves on top of a something 1,000 years old without smashing them to the ground. Actually, they estimate that without the intervention of major restoration work, that in approximately 500 years those trees will eventually claim victory over their adversary.  Who cares though right? We’ll be long gone by then. I would love to have relived those last 24 hours. I guess that’s the best part of life, you can’t.  I wonder if the guys who build those temples ever thought I’d see them with my Mom and Marie? Or even if I’d be here writing about them now.  We ate lunch at the park restaurant while Wey slept outside in his tuk-tuk with one arm hanging over the back right wheel.  It’s hilarious how incredibly comfortable they can make themselves in the most uncomfortable of circumstances. Marie and I discussed with my Mom about how fortunate she was to see some of the best stuff we’ve seen in over four and a half months of our travels.  Perhaps going forward it’d be a good idea to just call Mom and Marie, the 2 M’s. We rode in our tuk-tuk to reach a different hill but essentially the same sunset. We observed the same three balls again. I think it might be a Cambodian thing. I suspect the Cambodians are unaware of that. I reckon perspective and experience would be required to chime-in on that one. It so happens to be that, the sentence before last, was similar to the sentence I used yesterday to make context out of the word suspicious for the young monk I was attempting to teach English. Did I mention that I like to teach?  We left the park and road the tuk-tuk back to town. We visited the old market. It wasn’t as impressive as the temples. The overall town of, Siem Reap, is great though. Lots of French influence. I suppose that why the bread is the best we’ve had in Asia. Ate food at a street BBQ. It’s possible I over ordered, but we gave what I didn’t eat to a man who appeared to need it. That kinda stuff makes me feel good. Maybe you too? We returned to the hotel. Watched about twenty minutes of a History Channel documentary on the Pul Pot Regime. If we hadn’t felt bad enough for the poor conditions of the Cambodians, this certainly did it. We felt disturbingly noxious.  Collectively, we fell asleep; feeling sad but fortunate, but certainly more sad than fortunate. Zzzzz.

I Love Cambodia This Much (Photo: Schwary)
DAY 4  - CAMBODIA (Siem Reap to Battambang):

We arose to feeling sad again. In unison, we accomplished the ordinary requisites of traveling. We organized, folded, packed, and zipped. Off to a place called, Battambang. Walked two blocks to the bus station. Boarded the bus. Got dropped off forty-five minutes later. Together we boarded a boat with twenty other curious passengers, most f which were from Europe. Europeans enjoy traveling. Long ago, I concluded they were born that way. I have a theory that states, “Europeans, especially the French ones, exit the womb with a Lonely Planet in their hands. Instead of playing with toys or something like that, they study maps and memorize the capital cities of distant continents.  We road the boat for sixty kilometers that took every second of nine hours. It was awesome, I didn’t blink my eyes once, the entire time. Well, maybe during the three minute video I shot. Those three minutes are arguably the best three minutes of videography I ever filmed in my life. I’m thinking of sending it to the Discovery Channel.  Maybe not, I’m sure by this time they already have there own three minutes. At a bare minimum, they’ll just be for me, and TheVicariousAdventure.com. I’m selfish sometimes. Good for you though, unique footage is important. It’s what all the greedy, blood sucking networks spend millions of dollars on, monthly. We stopped a couple of times to play with monkeys, purchase some fresh, reverse osmosis purified water, and the highlight, not to be kept a secret...to use a toilet whose basin was the river water we ate our fish out of. Yummy!  We arrived at Battambang. Quickly, we realized that the expression, “It’s about the journey and not the destination”, really was true when applied to this tired old town. Immediately, we fed ourselves.  It wasn’t so much lunch or dinner, but rather, food for our bellies that hadn’t received any attention in quite some time.  The remainder of the day was uneventful. Thank God, because any more would qualify as a T.K.O. Weary from our day’s travel, we slept, in our underwear of course. Zzzzz.

P h o t o g r a p h s   o f   D a y   3:
What U Look'n At! (Photo: Schwary)
Fishing Over Troubled Waters (Photo: Schwary)
2 Faced, Actually, 4 Faced (Photo: Schwary)
Mom Entering Temple Land (Photo: Schwary)
Marie & The Lonely Planet (Photo: Schwary)
Eskimo Kiss (Photo: Schwary)
Mom at Lunch Break (Photo: Schwary)
Entrenched (Photo: Schwary)
Our Money Shot (Photo: Schwary)
Hall Pass (Photo: Schwary)
TheVicariousAdventure Bliss (Photo: Schwary)
Le Grand MondeDeZurlinden (Photo: Schwary)
 A Set of 3 (Photo: Schwary)
Marie & Angkor (Photo: Schwary)
Perfect (Photo: Schwary)
Celebrating Life at Angkor (Photo: Schwary)
Can You Imagine? (Photo: Schwary)
The Team (Photo: Schwary)
A Mouth Full (Photo: Schwary)
P h o t o g r a p h s   o f   D a y  4:
The Red Dust Road (Photo: Schwary)
A Moment in Time (Photo: Schwary)
LeMondeDeZurlinden In Effect (Photo: Schwary)
Treading Through Life (Photo: Schwary)
Feeling Fortunate (Photo:Schwary)
Feeling More Fortunate (Photo: Schwary)
Nice to Meet You (Photo: Schwary)
Limelight (Photo: Schwary)
Heading In The Right Direction (Photo: Schwary)
Where Does All This Lead? (Photo: Schwary)
Staying Focused (Photo: Schwary)
Reflection (Photo: Schwary)
More Than Just a Ride (Photo: Schwary)
Stand & Deliver (Photo: Schwary)
Straight Ahead (Photo: Schwary)
Toilet On the Sangker River (Photo: Schwary)
Dry Tears (Photo: Schwary)
Like A Movie (Photo: Schwary)
Tailgating (Photo: Schwary)
Hard At Work (Photo: Schwary)
Sangker River Traffic (Photo: Schwary)
Docked at the River's Edge (Photo: Schwary)
The Little Captain Who Could (Photo: Schwary)
Boat Parade (Photo: Schwary)

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