In continuing to blog about my adventures last week, I come to the highlight of the trip: The phenomenal Angkor Wat temple complex. This is going to be a short(ish) post with regards to text, because in this case photos speak so much better.
Angkor Wat is stunning. Everything you would ever imagine. Huge. Ancient. Mysterious. Overgrown. Overwhelming. Intricate, yet rugged, and looking like a set straight out of Indiana Jones or Tomb Raider (sort of because it is…). If you can go, please do. It will take your breath away.
The best part about the temples wasn’t the scenery, though, but the company. When you’re travelling about on your own, one of the brilliant things is the ease with which you can strike up conversations. The bus to Siem Reap was no exception, and I ended up getting to know the three Koreans who were sitting close to me (Kyo Ri, Jun Sic and Ah Young). They could speak a little English, but despite the (significant!) communication barriers we became friends. Granted, a lot of the chat seemed to involve laughing loudly at jokes we weren’t quite sure we understood, but they ended up staying at the same guest house and travelling around Angkor Wat with me, which really made the trip. I mean, the temples are great and all, but there’s something beautiful about experiencing their ancient majesty with new friends, especially friends from the other side of the world! I’m incredibly glad that I was sitting next to them on the bus (thanks God!), because getting to know them was without a doubt the highlight of the day. Hopefully we’ll stay in contact!
I think this trip, just like any other, has been marked not by the new food, sights or sounds (though they have been great), but by the people I’ve shared them with. Be it folk from church, from work, my hosts and their friends, Tuk-Tuk drivers, fellow travellers, kids at Indonesian orphanages, kids selling bracelets at Angkor Wat, guest house owners, folk at restaurants, Cambodian mission teams or simply random strangers, its the people I’ve met who have made my South-East Asia experience amazing. There’s something about human relationships. We really do need each other!
So guys, if you’re reading this, thanks for making the trip amazing. :)
[I’ll put up a post with a slideshow of pictures from Angkor Wat shortly. Seriously, it is amazing.]