Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The SSEAYP Diaries: Cambodia, City of Gold and Glory

“Be thankful for all the bad things in life, for they open your eyes to the good things you weren’t paying attention to before.”

A quote that explains a huge part of my trip to Cambodia. With that, I’m here to introduce you to the family I explored Cambodian, Khmer roots with. :’)

So I was housed with three other youths from the program - Elle and Su from Myanmar and Yocco from Japan. And the host family I stayed with just happened to have both their daughters be a part of the program; designing shirts for the youth and doing anything media related. We had a brother called Hazel who I found out soon after was a huge fan of The Script. 

They brought us to the museum, and I cannot begin to express how in awe I was. I felt like I walked straight into my history book and started living it all live. The architecture left me looking like a mad tourist carrying three cameras and a phone (for vlogging purposes) around and snapping everything from every angle. An architect-nut's dream.

Huge stone and concrete artifacts of Gods and deities were all around the museum, and you could donate and pay your respects to them.

Us with our homestay mom. I swear she's really beautiful.

We made our way to the Pagoda which was located on the top of this hill. Running across roads in Cambodia is as mad as you trying to bungee jump. Traffic is insane.

This cutie came to keep me company while I was paying my respects at the entrance of the temple. 
We walked in and had a look around the interior of the Pagoda before making our way to the Royal Palace. 

Gold is everywhere.

The palace grounds were just breathtaking. The sun made all the stupa's glow in all their golden glory.

Almost complete family photograph. 

We headed off for a short stroll through the markets, and it was all quaint and full of handmade trinkets. Mats were laid out on the ground in front of food stalls so anyone and everyone could just chill and enjoy the atmosphere around.

Two themes ran through the whole market: Weird food + elephants.

I can also now say that I ate on board the Titanic.

I really enjoyed the food, which is probably why there's not many pictures of dinner.

We hit AEON Mall with Hazel, and roamed around. I bought postcards. I spend alot of money on postcards, sigh. Oh, and we had to do a mad search because our cousin suddenly went missing. Yup.

Exhausted, we headed home, and fresh coconuts were waiting for us on the table :')

The night was just us packing and repacking, and doing the whole 'girls talk about guys' thing. 

It was really sad at the end because I fell sick with a 40 degree fever and was quarantined. Which obviously meant I didn't get to say goodbye to them while they were onboard the ship. 

I was extremely touched when I found a long letter from my homestay sis and from both my homestay parents asking me to get well soon. God, was I depressed because I couldn't say goodbye.

I hope they know I still am missing them.

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