Miriam on the river’s bank
Stairway to Phnom Sompeau’s cave/killing field
Ahh, the dust
Accusatory statue?! “What, what did I do?”
372 blissfully (blisteringly) hot steps up to Wat Banan, Angkor temple.
Ok, enough Battambang…now it’s on the big city. Assured of good roads and a quick bus ride, we were put on the slow bus. Another 7 1/2 hour trip and we were in Phnom Penh. The bus stopped multiple times, the last at a car wash so the bus could pull into the capital nice and shiny. Although I’ve experienced it over and over again, the the volume and pure cheesyness of Khmer karaoke videos never ceases to amaze me. With my own music maxed out, I was just barely able to find my “happy place” (a term that has come to symbolize a traveler’s trance on long distance, painful journeys). Nearly deaf and exhausted we checked into the Paragon on Phnom Penh’s river front. The usually peaceful boardwalk has been transformed into a massive public works project, slated for a 2010 completion. Oh well, anything beats Battambang.
Central market in Phnom Penh. I love the French colonial architecture.
As there are three things to do in Battambang, there are four in Phnom Penh. The Killing Fields, S-21 (Khmer Rouge tourture center), shopping, and drinking. Yes yes, there is also the Royal Palace and the National Museum, but both are so uninteresting that they barely qualify.
After a depressing day of visiting S-21 (Toul Sleng) and the Killing Fields, we raised our spirits the only way you can in Phnom Penh. Shopping and beers. Actually it was shopping and coffee, real coffee even, in the middle of the Russian Market, a crowded (I think packed, briming, cramped, or over-filled better describes it) market in the middle of Phnom Penh. Barely able to push our way down the body-width aisles, voices of the sellers burried in their wares tried to direct you to their booth. “Mr., hey Mr., you want t-shirt?”.
Photos of the condemend, S-21 interogation center for the Khmer Rouge
S-21 was a high school before the horrors started on April 15, 1975
A list of rules
A torture room
Choung Ek, The Killing Fields, on the outskirts of Phnom Penh is where the prisoners would be sent to be killed.
The unlucky, or the educated, or the ones who spoke out, or the ones who made a mistake, or the slow, or the ones who wore glasses, or the…
Mass graves at the Killing Fields
For you photo-types out there, the blurry photos were taken with a Lens-Baby lens. A gimmicky lens, I know, but I think it fits the nightmareish history of Cambodia.
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