Parcel pick up in Phnom Penh…..
Archive for 19/2/2013
So back on the road again all loaded up we head off along the straight roads towards Phnom Penh, the land is very flat and dry…avoiding wondering cows we ride as fast as we can, not easy of roads that aren’t that great, the traffic wasn’t too bad, one thing about Cambodia is there’s always something interesting to look at along the way!
Trucks piled sky high with various goods and even vans loaded with people that it looks like they will burst! Animal’s being transported to the markets on motorbikes; it makes for an interesting ride.
Everyone nose to tail, but no horn beeping no road rage here, we even went down the wrong side of the road…and the cars and trucks either stopped or moved to let us pass, that would never happen in Australia, lol.
We pull into the gates of Le Leela Guest House, a beautiful French colonial building, and were greeted by the security guard, after we had drank our ‘Welcome’ drink we registered and was then shown to beautiful room with 12 foot ceilings, and a bathroom bigger than a cupboard…lol
After freshening up we head down the stairs past the swimming pool, which is set, half indoors!! The walls surrounding the pool are all white with 1960’s black and white model photos, very elegant and above the pool on the ceiling is a stunning chandelier, now you may be thinking this is some posh hotel that cost a fortune to stay in, but it was only $23 a night…pays to shop around!
Off we set in the heat of the day, declining the tuk tuk offers along the way to collect are parcel from the DHL depot and collect the ‘spot’ GPS tracker, which Clive left behind in Ipoh, outside our hotel window…Thanks Ian from http://www.hotelstation18.com.my for sending it to us. Once again check out this Hotel if your traveling to Malaysia.
With that out the way we set off to find some lunch, we had a large and delicious chicken burger meal for only $3.00.
We also bought what we thought at the time a cheap Android tablet as we were always fighting for the use of the computer..l.o.l
We also came across a car showroom selling electric cars, built in Cambodia…..well done Cambodia for giving it a go….
We then went off for a wonder Phnom Penh, we found our way into a beautiful park which is home to Wat Phnom, it has been a central site in the city as religious sanctuary for prayers and offerings since 1373.
After an exhausting hot walk we head back to the hotel for a swim, which was very refreshing….we spent the evening to get ready for the trip north to Battambang…..
Phnom Penh was not originally in our plans to visit, why? Because we came here a few years ago with some friends and visited S21 and the killing fields it was appalling to read about the atrocities Pol Pot’s did to his OWN people that it made us feel sick inside we were all affected, so much so we would not come here again for a visit…
But we needed to return to collect a parcel from the DHL office.
This is just a brief history of what happened, although most people would know:
Over 30 years ago, we were still at school.
The people of Cambodia were suffering unbelievable atrocities,
In 1975, the insurgents seized control of the country and the Government collapsed – thus starts the rule of the Khmer Rouge and Pol Pot.
As soon as Khmer Rouge took control, the genocide started immediately with the city folk forced to the countryside, intelligence was persecuted and thousands were killed in Pol Pot’s attempt to create his ideal country. We went to: Security Prison 21 (S 21) and The Killing Fields…
Security Prison 21 – S21
When you walk into the school you see the playing fields, the 3 storey buildings in big U shape, which house the classrooms that children, had lessons in.
It all looked so peaceful trees and flowers, People quietly walking around with drink bottles, cameras in hand and no one smiling.
Outside there are gallows that used to be gym equipment. The “gallows” were used by the Khmer Rouge to torture the prisoners until they confessed to their “crimes” by hanging them upside down and dunking their heads into the big urns when they lost consciousness.
Everyone tortured and killed was photographed and details documented, most of these pictures are now on display in the prison and it makes for a disturbing exhibition. Photos of Cambodians some with nooses around their neck, some with chains.
The Killing Fields
The Killing Fields I’m not sure of the right words to describe it are: horrendous, horrifying, disturbing and plenty more, it makes you feel sick.
I remember the grass being a lush green and shady trees giving way to dirt paths
Walking around you cannot help but notice the mass graves, with bones and clothes that you can clearly in the ground, this was not right! It’s upsetting and depressing.
Amongst the mass graves there’s it looks like just an ordinary tree, but this is NO ordinary tree this is the KILLING tree, one that was used to smash the skulls of the babies and children before they were thrown into the mass grave.
The Buddhist Stupa contains the skulls of nearly 9000 people who were killed here which are piled high…
This is way we didn’t want to come here again…it was to upsetting for us , be it right or wrong this was our decision!….