Friday, April 19, 2013

Phnom Penh

Here is a small warning.  Brace yourself for some long posts.  I did my best to try and break up Phnom Penh into 2 categories.....normal and very depressing.  So in this first post I squeezed all the happy fun stuff in.  The second Phnom Penh post will be much harder for me to share.  It may take me awhile but bare with me.....there is so much to learn from Cambodia.
 First stop, a cocktail at the FCC!
FCC stands for the Foreign Correspondents Club.
Lots of historical photos on the walls.
Cyclo tour of the city.

Huge central market!
Did some serious shopping in here.

How many people does it take to operate a motorbike?

Beautiful French inspired post office.

Snail Snacks!

Stunning iron work at the Royal Palace.

That's more my flavor, as far as snacks go.

The Royal Palace.
 More Royal Palace.
They were chasing us out of here because they were preparing to greet royal guests.  It was kind of funny!

I took a picture of this cement bag because I bought several wallets and bags that were made from these.
Amazing tree.  I had never seen anything like it.

This is the temple where our guide, Bun lived as a monk for a period of time.
 Some curious kidos probably wondering why we were hanging out inside the temple.
 Monks living quarters.
 Inside the monks living quarters, listening to Bun's friend play some beautiful music.
He is blind.

 Gate leaving the temple.
Thai tea....Cambodian style!
 This was some amazing food!!!!!
At Friends restaurant, a restaurant that gives back by raising funds for training programs for disadvantaged youth.  All of the workers were young people being trained.

 Chili ice cream with grilled pineapple!
It was fabulous!
 Some mango deliciousness.
Next stop......the hard part.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

On the road......

I have to say one of my favorite parts of this trip was that it was part "road trip".
Driving across a foreign country you get to see so much more.  You are so far removed from the "tourist" places, out where the people live and work and play.  Luckily, our amazing guide liked to stop, a ton, so we felt like we didn't miss a thing.
 Roadside restaurant.  Could have stay here all day.
 Gasoline for sale!!
Yep, in soda bottles!
 Rats.....for export to Vietnam.
Evidently it's a booming business, although, not the cleanest.
 Rest stop!  Asian style toilets, squat, no flush, no tp!
At least there is that handy bucket of water.
 Roadside snack!
Pretty sure we tried every roadside snack in Cambodia.
Crispy fried tarantula!
 OH!  It's actually not that bad!
Tasted a bit like a BBQ potato chip!
 The streets are always busy!
Chicken delivery guy.
Yes that is a TON of chickens hanging upside down from a motorbike.
Serious serious talent!!!
My personal favorite roadside snack.....Krolan!!!
Was so unbelievably good.
Rice, beans, coconut, and a bit of sugar packed into bamboo and roasted over a fire.
Pretty sure our group ate about 25 of these.
 Beautiful lotus!

 Another roadside snack....lotus seeds.

The lotus seeds inside the pods.
They looked like a tiny egg or a very large pearl.
Didn't have much of a taste, a little bitter and crunchy.
Up next.....the capital city of Cambodia!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Angkor Wat 2

Here are the last little bits from my days touring Siem Reap & the Angkor Wat temple complex.
 Beautiful music as we approach a quite temple.
Their are so many temples and ruins it is just amazing that so many are so well preserved.
More blessings for our group and a chance to try Paan, a combination of betel leaf and areca nut.
I could not stand it.....totally burned my mouth.

Finding peace after a very long day.
 Children on their way home from school.

One of my favorite photos from my trip!
The stunning temple reflection in the moat.  I ordered this on a canvas to hang above my bed.  I seriously LOVE this pic!!!
Our group dinner after a very hot but amazing day!
Our appetizers!
Next post.....on the road & Phnom Penh!