Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Preah Khan and Banteay Samre: Almost Templed Out

You can admit it, you're a little templed out at this point.  And you're templing from the comfort of your climate controlled home or office, with a steamy mug of coffee by your side (is it Dunkers?  I'm so jealous...And don't even think about telling me it's a Jackzers).  After only two full days of nonstop templing in the brutal heat and humidity of Siem Reap, we were feeling a little templed out too.  (And we were also really sad that Lauren had left).  But then I forced Dave to see two more temples, both of which I'll force you to read about in this post (to the extent that I can actually force you to read this, which, I can't).  So don't worry, you're almost done here.

Preah Khan

Like Ta Prohm, near which it is located, Preah Khan was built in the 12th century for King Jayavarman VII.  What is now a ruin of pink sandstone and green moss was once the site of a combined city, temple and university with almost 10,000 servants, attendants and dancers.   We visited on a rainy day, which kept the tourists away, intensified the colors and gave the whole site a sort of secret garden feel.  Exploring this temple in solitude was magical.
Hey there.  Welcome to Preah Khan. Let me get that gate for you.
The temple is picturesquely located by a river.

The ruins are pretty unrestored

I think this the fourth photo of you've seen of me chillaxing in a windowseat.
It's kind of my thing.

Dave's thing?
Never playing by the rules.

This was my favorite hidden little courtyard
The ladies in the middle appear to have a bellyache
These gals are deep in prayer
And she's just looking for someone to play double dutch with.
Dragon chaises were all the rage in the 12th century
Peeking between two ancient pillars
I love the pink and green
We are seriously dwarfed by this tree.
Banteay Samre

OK, last temple!  Banteay Samre was a Hindu temple built in the 12th century, in the style of Angkor Wat.  Although we both preferred the jungly wildness of Preah Khan, we did relish being the only tourists at Banteay Samre.  After we finished cruising around, we spent some time sitting out of the rain, sharing a snack and reflecting on our week in Siem Reap.
Can you see the similarities to Angkor Wat?

The temple had a forbidden, fortress-like feeling to it
This one has been pretty heavily restored


We may have been the only tourists in Banteay Samre, but we weren't the only people there.
These two little girls followed us around for a bit.
Hello, one dollar for me?  One dollar?
Schoolpen? Schoolpen? Schoolpenschoolpen?

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