Guest blog by our wonderful teacher, Lillian!!
Today the teachers, Nick, Kame, Emily, Adele, Maddie, Amity, myself (Lillian) as well as Annaliese and our wonderful team leader Domdin, all went to visit a floating village. This village is connected to Tonle Sap lake. We started our day with chocolate croissants and bananas, which was the best surprise we have waken up to. We headed out to the village in a van instead of tuk tuks, which made the ride relaxing because it was less bumpy and fun because we were all together.
This has been my favourite outing here in Cambodia because of the breathtaking sceneries, for example, the red dust from the dirt road goes everywhere, even covering half the greenery, so that the tree leaves were half green and half red. We went on a two hour tour of the village and lake in a long river boat with a driver and a ten year old boy, guiding the boat with a long paddle through narrow spaces and passing boats. We all had our own seats but some of us visited the roof for the view or the front of the boat, posing for photos.
January is the dry season here in Cambodia, which meant that the floating village was more like a village on stilts. The houses are high up in the air from our point if view on the river which is only 2-3 meters. This means that when the rainy season comes and the river rises up to 20 meters the houses really do look like they are floating. We paused for photos on the lake and them went for a canoe ride with some of the women from the village, through the floating forest where trees are just growing in the water. The hole experience was breathtakingly serene, with sunlight shining through the low lying canopy and the sound of water against the boat.
Guest blog from village builders, Maddie!!
Angkor Wat. Wat? Whatttt!
Day 3: Dawn visit to Angkor Wat temples with building volunteers.
Angkor Wat was built over a period of 37 years by volunteers. It was built for the exclusive purpose of worship. The group spent the morning exploring the ancient temples, lead by tour guide Mr Cheng. We learnt about the history of carvings and the symbolic significance associated with them. The second temple we visited was Bayon, the temple of all the faces! And the last temple was Ta Prohm, or better known as Tomb Raider Temple, but we were shattered that we didn’t see Angelina Jolie 🙁
The group had the afternoon off after visiting Angkor Wat at sunrise. Most took a MUCH needed nap, as a few were up since 2am watching a soccer game taking place in England! Others took the afternoon to explore the city, get some ice-cream or go for a swim. At 5:30 everyone met downstairs for a Khmer lesson with the assistant team lead, Domdin. All smarted up, we headed to dinner afterwards and ended the night at the night markets. Tomorrow is our second last day at the village. Ready to work work work!