Thursday, April 4, 2013
Angkor Wat Cambodia
Angkor Wat is one of the 7 Wonders of the World.
It was built like the Egyptian Pyramids as the stone is cut very close and fitted, and around the time of the Mayan Temples. It was like touching a bit of energy from the past.
Coming to Angkor Wat was an amazing experience in time. These buildings were built in about 30 years, at least roughly put together in that time, but still all the carvings and intricate work was part of this building period. The outer loop of temples is much older in differing states of decay. In some places the trees have tried to take over the buildings and you can see many blocks have tumbled. The cause of the damage could be because the buildings were built over a 1000 years ago; it is hard to distinguish whether it is by pure age, stray bombs during the war, or malicious bombs of the Khmer Rouge. There is much restoration in progress. The attention to detail throughout is amazingly visible even today. It began as a Hindu Temple complex and became Buddhist as government and religion changed. You can see some of the changes that have been made, but mainly it is the same.
Being an amature photographer I don't know which pictures to cull and which to save. I kept a lot of them because they tell a story of what the building blocks look like, how the windows and doorways lead into other passages. I figure the professionals can give me the best photos in the book I picked up about the history, so I'm playing with angles and my love of space.
The Nagas protect us, so these are the many headed cobras at the entrance.
Stairways to Heaven are very steep
Always look behind you to see what the view might be
Stories on the walls tell of battle and triumphs. Here is one of the elephants in battle
The walkways are put together after the rubble and look how they fit
this is a "what is it" laid in the walk
Mandy and I infront of the bridge where the gods on one side battle the demons on the other. Many of the faces have been restored. They hold the serpent that they are tugging back and forth. The story is they had it wrapped around a mountain in the great sea. They tugged and twisted the mountain making fresh water and pulling it inland.
Savon got a little carried away taking our picture to get it "right"
the fit of the corner is amazing
These walls have patterns carved in them...just roughness was it for a reason?
another Stairway to Heaven
just had to look up
The strangling hold of the Kapok trees with several temples
sometimes they just tumbled
This is a mural telling of how it looked before the restoration
Our picture by the 'great sea' across the street from our lunch stop
The temple with all the faces
rubble in the courtyard waiting to be rebuilt
Monkeys greeted us the morning of the second day
Savon my guide and tuk tuk driver was telling me about the prayers of the Hindu and below is the lake that represent the serpent and the gods fighting over the mountain and making fresh water
You can just see the head and tail of the serpent in the farthest pool. We were not allowed to walk any closer
The artist taking a break. He's been taught to paint exactly like the others at other temples. They are good, I would love to see them do their own work
Elephants guard the 4 corners of the Bakong Temple
a final view of a temple as we drove back to Siem Reap
This is a photo of me is by my daughter a professional photographer, Mandolyn Photography. It shows the immensity of the buildings and the spaces. People saw what she was doing and stood back to let her get the shot...then took it of their family members realizing it was a wonderful opportunity to get a great picture.