Published: June 23rd 2011June 22nd 2011
This is the stupa that holds the adults that were killed.
Battambang was new for us. After a short bus ride from Siem Reap, well, short is a relative term, we arrived in the very small town of Battambang, the last stronghold of the Khmer Rouge. We were ambushed by the local tuk-tuk drivers-they surrounded us and were pulling on my backpack which wasn't on all the way and I began to fall. I yelled at them, then they immediately stopped-and of course went right back to trying to get our business. Usually I can get people to stop hassling me if I start talking price and make it ridiculous-but these guys were willing to take us for free. Finally, we picked a guy and off we went. As we drove the 300 feet to the hotel, we realized that the bus stop was the busiest place in the entire town.
We found a nice bar run by an Aussie, Gary, and cooled down. Had a lovely dinner at a local restaurant-what the kids lack in language is made up in smiles. The next day we decided to get a tuk-tuk and see a few sights. We went to the Bamboo Train, I took some pictures-we needed to see it now
This is the famous Bamboo Train. Notice the cows lying on the track in the background. It will be dismantled soon and take its place in history.
because it will be dismantled soon. I don't want to spoil it for everyone so you have to wait just a few more days and the picture will tell the story! We then went to the Killing Caves-the caves where the Khmer Rouge took people and threw them to their deaths. A lot of beautiful Buddhas, little monkeys screaching, and the best view of Battamang-all rice paddies flooded from the rain and coconut trees scattered everywhere. The best part of our tour was our guides. Two little guys took us through the first cave-they had flashlights and they were very careful to keep a light shining on my feet and telling me "head, head" meaning to duck. After their tip they took off. The Killing Caves were next. Our guide this time was a fourteen year old young man Pane-he was quite informative. He opened the stupas that held the skulls and bones of the victims so Steven could take a picture. He was getting his English and French mixed up but would correct himself and continure telling us the history. He also reminded us to make a donation to Sleeping Buddha-gently but firmly. I had Steven take a picture
Another view of the Bamboo Train
$5.00 for one hour to take a ride back in time.
of him with me-again, when you see the picture you will know why!
Before we left we ended up in a French cafe, eating gigantic crepes, and listening to the White album. You just never know where the Fab Four are going to turn up!
Off to Phnom Penh on the bus, another six plus hour bus ride. This is our next to last stop (no, Jilly, we haven't gotten to Seoul yet-I know you are counting the days), and we are on our way home. We are ready to come home-my clothes are worn out, my flip-flops are coming apart, and I miss my dog!
There are more photos below