Day 41 - Angkor Part 2March 20, 2017 in Cambodia
A slightly less early start today (7.30am) for Angkor complex part 2. Today, just in the morning, we saw 7 temples. They were mostly smaller than the big draws yesterday and I can't really remember the names of any of them. But I can remember some of the odd things that happened across the morning.
The first temple we went to was cross shaped with rooms the width of the 'arm' all the way to the centre. The doorways between each room got smaller and smaller as you got closer to the middle. In the middle we met a man in a police man's uniform - I have no idea if he was a genuine policeman - who took it upon himself to give us a guided tour including going and visiting in one room a very old person (I thought man, Matt thought woman) sitting in front of incense and a carving of a Buddhist queen. He/she took our arms and chanted something I can only assume was a blessing before blowing on our foreheads (?!). We learnt a lot of interesting things from the policeman guide who at the end asked for a $5 tip and wasn't too impressed that we only gave him $3 but there was no way he was 'I have no change-ing' and taking our $10 for a tour we didn't request.
Next was a temple you got to over a long wooden bridge. On the way to the temple we saw a child's flip flops on the side of the bridge but no child was to be seen. Odd and a little concerning. The temple was apparently the hospital temple as the king would go there to drink holy water which cures everything. You couldn't go in this one as it was surround by the holy water so we didn't stay long but on the way back we worked out what happened to the owner of the flip flops. He must have been under the bridge catching fish as he was back up with a little fish squirming in his hands.
The next few temples were quite similar to ones we'd either seen or to each other (except with a couple of geocaches). One had some nice elephant statues that I liked and a girl getting a friend to take photos of her doing yoga poses at the top. At another we were admiring a chicken and her chicks when the chicken bolted, a rooster started squawking and the chicks all huddled under a root. A local guide explained to his tour group (with us eavesdropping) that the chicken had seen a bird swoop which would have tried to take a chick so she'd gone on the attack. It was like something from Planet Earth, though I'm not sure Attenborough has ever done much on chickens.
I think it was after bonus temple 3 that we got back to Mr Smarty and his bike wouldn't start. Queue a flock of other tuk tuk drivers flocking and pointing at different bits of the bike until one guy who must have some tuk tuk ring authors came by and pointed at the other side of the bike and suddenly the problem was fixed. It broke down again after stop 4 but was quickly fixed and we were ok from there. We asked Mr Smarty what was wrong and he just said the bike was old so maybe it's a common occurrence.
On our way out of the final temple we pulled over to look at the wild monkeys which sit on the edge of the roads hoping tourists will feed them. Mr Smarty gave one of them a bottle of water which it proceeded to down - so funny. What was less funny in the moment was that I then felt something on my back and another monkey had grabbed my bag strap and t-shirt. Once it had got off and I hadn't been bitten or given rabies I could see the funny side as it sat behind me in the tuk tuk with Mr S playing with it. Well until I think it nibbled him and it was time to go. It clung on briefly as we drove away before getting off to join his friends.
We got back about lunch time again and went to Pub Street for lunch. I found a dish which ticked all my favourite ingredients - chicken, mash potato, pesto and cheese. We had a quick 50cents beer before coming back for more pool time. The most amusing part of pool time was either a grown man diving in and soaking two women without caring one bit or the bar man trying to fix the jacuzzi bubbles on the pool edge and somehow just making water spray up in the air from random places on the edge.
After the Western lunch we were back to Cambodian for dinner. More Lok Lek and Amok. Then a Cambodian cocktail class at a really cool bar which is the only old wooden house left in the city centre. It was just us in the class with our teacher Sombo (or Sombu, we can't agree which was right). We made a ginger mojito, a tamarind sauce and for our third I made 'The Lanes' which featured peppercorns (surprisingly nice) and Matt made a sweet Green Lemongrass. Sombo/u made us read all the ingredients out loud in the Khmer language which was very difficult but hilarious. She kept pitting us against each other, but I'm not sure there were any winners. The class was excellent and another skill to bring back.
Final cookery class tomorrow!Read more