Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Siem Reap, and the Wats.. Part 2

From Part 1....

OK.. now hungry.. lunch time!! We went to a restaurant in Angkor itself, a tad bit more expensive but better than going out of Angkor just to save a few bucks. Food was good... but later on we realised that the food was toned down, and not as spicy as we wanted it to be cos the chef usually makes it less spicier for tourists.. ok.. so next time, gotta ask them to spice it up more.

After lunch, we went to Preah Khan, where we did our pre-tomb raider shots (stunt shots with climbing and jumping and.. hmm.. acting silly most of the time). Here, there were some amazing trees and the sky was just perfect to grab some nice shots to accompany the action shots.. hehe..

BK and titties

A major discovery... I think

Ready to fight!!!

Yeah,,, heavy alright...

A short stop at Bayon after Preah Khan for more photo shots.. and....

Finally, to end the day, our first sunset view, and we went to Bakheng Hill, prob the most crowded area to grab sunsets in the whole of Angkor. Yup, it was a hill, so to get up there, either take the elephant or climb the hill.. we did the latter. There were many people at the top.. and sunset was indeed beautiful. The one thing that amazes me about the ruins was that when the sun shines on the buildings, it looked like it was glowing and basking in the glory of the sun.. I think that's what attracted people here, in that this really looked like a the city of gold.. something like the South American counterpart (if it does exists.. ). It's really amazing to see the ruins change colour.

Ok.. let me stress here.. I DON’T EAT EXOTIC FOOD. I can do everything in the world, but ask me to eat even frogs, and my stomach WILL churn. In Siem Reap, the locals have a delicacy which was similar to the Philippine’s half formed duck embryo egg… this one is chicken. We saw it all along the way to Angkor and well, BK and WX were really onz to try it. Short to say, they described that it tasted like egg.. with some extra parts in it.. hmm… and I’m happy to just know tt.. .

OK.. all done… back to the hotel for a short rest and dinner.
That night, we decided to eat something nice.. but it all went down the drain. First, we couldn't find the restaurant we initially wanted to go. Then, when we went to some posh looking place, the food took tooooo long to arrive that the guys got irritated, and we decided to leave. Then was off to KFC for some quickfood, but the guys took too long to order that by the time they got the order in, the last remaining chicken pieces were snapped up by some other tourists.
They finally had their meal at a restaurant at Pub Street that was affliated to our hotel. hmm.. oh well.. WX and me went shopping since we ate our fill at KFC already.. and I bought some nice and cheap clothes :) happy...

OK, the next morning was the sunrise morning. Angkor Wat has this sunrise shot that is somewhat, the shot that every guest here must take. And, as every tourist there ever was in this place, we had to get that shot too. We set out at 4.30am, had a chop chop brekkie and off we went in our groggy state. We arrived at Angkor Wat and there were already many waiting there. Found a good spot, got us some chairs and ordered some drinks. Here, we just waited and waited and waited and kept fiddling with the camera tiil we had like 100+ shots before the sun even rose. The only thing that irritated us here was some ABC that was so persistant on taking the so called best shot ever with his SLR's that he had no more normal human decency and was just plain rude to everyone else. Wished I had the Kalashnikov here to gun him down.. hehe.. OK back to sunrise.

The sunrise was so-so to me.. it was beautiful as every other sunrises are.. and it was nice to see the horizons changed color, but I still prefer my walks along Fort Canning on the way to work.. while enjoying the clean fresh air better :)..

After the sunrise, we toured the Wat and the place is amazing.. it's really big, and there were so much to see.. We had a fun time spotting the sculptures on the walls and identifying them to the characters we read in the book. Over and over again.. we saw the Naga, and the churning of milk and the Hindu deities, and the in some corners, Buddha. It was interesting to see how the Buddhist influence usurped into this predominantly Hindu area during the early years of Angkor. Need to brush on history already. After that, we went up the main temple area.. and yes.. must have no bared shoulders. Had to borrow a shawl to go up. Well.. spent the whole morning in the Wat and took a lot of photos again.

Studying in the ole library

One of the many corridors

Before heading to lunch, where we finally got the spiciness right, we stopped at a small ruin area called thomannon for more pics. Can’t remem much about this place tho.. but CW said we stopped there for a while.. and I think he has a better memory than me.

And after lunch, finally, the real Tomb Raider temple... Ta Phrom. This place has it's fair share of eerieness as it was the only ruin to be left on its own, and it has trees growing on it... really huge trees growing on it with it's roots holding the whole structure up. We really went crazy here..

Other tourists were laughing...

One of the most diffcult shots to take...

The best part is, we had a nice old caretaker to take us tombraidering around the place.. and past the 'No entry' signs :) :) We saw things that otherwise we would've missed like the hidden Buddha, and the still retained intricately crafted aspara.
We took some key shots here as well.. like the one where the tree roots were covering the doorways.. neat!!! I love this place!!

One of the Lonely Planet pic replica

And finally, our last sunset of the visit at Prae Rup.

We hiked all the way up the temple, and got a good spot to chill.

Nope.. not this spot...

Not this spot neither

While waiting for the sunset, we got beers.. and BK and I finished a can each. The rest weren't too keen, as we still needed to climb down later. hehe.. well.. safe to say, I got down alive still. Sunset was amazing...

Back to the hotel, tipped the driver and finally… massage time.. I was so waiting for this..

At night, some new Hungarian friends of RW joined us for dinner, and then clubbing at Angkor What?. We were lucky to get a table there as the whole place was already full. We downed two towers, and started to lighten up more. Everyone went wild here, and had a great time on the dance floor, esp BK.. who once started can-not stop :).. hehe.. A smashing time to a smashing trip..
Angkor What??

I just love this shot!!!

Went back to the hotel when I was gaga already.. haha.. (not enuff sleep can cause easy drunkenness.. and well.. the night before, only had 1-2 hrs of sleep) and zzz immediately in the guys room... haha.. while watching ?? Tropic Thunder.. hehe..I was out already by then.
Woke up fresh in the morning .. prob cos I got more sleep this time.. oh no.. time to go back already.. headed to the girls room.. cleaned up a bit, packed and time to go to the airport. Short, fast, sweet... trip...

The journey back was uneventful, and we had a short transit at Pnom Penh airport.. so sad, a fun holiday was coming to an end. Well... went home... tired... laundry.. work.. and zzz

This trip really reminded me of the time when I wanted to do archeology.. and to explore long lost ruins with wondrous tales of mystery and adventure.. the Lala Crotch style. hmm.. to relive such fantasy was a great experience and can be quite addictive. Here's to a more adventure in the future.. and great company to go along with it!!

Trudge on....

PS : most of the pics here are courtesy of the amazing CW and his GF, the beautiful WX, and the ever courageous RW (who did a lot of rock climbing poses). BK, other than posing, also become the sub photog who took beautiful shots as well.. and well.. this trip was really FUN!!! Thank you all!!

1 comment:

Bea said...

awesome adventure jo! =D

glad u didn't try the chicken embryo...eeee >.<