We took a very long and bumpy Tuk Tuk ride out to Beng Mealea temple. It was an excellent adventure though and felt more intimate than in a minivan. The people in Cambodia are so sweet. All you have to do is smile and they smile back so warmly. All the kids love to say hello on the street and wave. You have to be careful with the food here though. I finally got food poisoning. It felt inevitable. I highly recommend traveling SE Asia with medicine ready for the illness as some areas are difficult to obtain it. I believe I got sick when we stopped for lunch on the way to the temple. I had a chicken burger (what the hell is that anyway) at the tourist trap. They all get paid to take tourists there and the prices are 3 times higher than usual… and I got food poisoning. At least there was a hammock and I got to enjoy a Cambodian siesta for a bit.
Once at the temple, we started climbing. I believe this is okay as I read online you can and even someone that worked there even climbed around with me for a minute. But he was kind of creepy and was just trying to get me to tip him so I had to shoo him off. Although nowhere it says you can’t climb, you might get in trouble. I scurried across the top of part of the temple because I had climbed in so deep I didn’t know how to get out. I made it okay, but my delicate little Chinese friend Maya freaked out and literally started yelling “Christina, I’m scared!!!” So everyone was like ohhhhh and way over reacting and we got yelled at. This British woman thought it would be really awesome to yell at us FIVE times how stupid we were. I can’t say it was smart, but it was fun and fuck her. Totally inappropriate to just yell at someone like that. Sure, I was being silly and climbing and enjoying myself and maaaybe shouldn’t have walked right there but I was stuck… just yelling at someone like that makes you a far stupider. I would recommend climbing around the temple and ignoring haters.
The photograph above shows a bridge. There are actually a ton of bridges as there used to be pools of water all around the temple. It was wonderful to try to imagine what the place looked like at the time. The construction was really impressive and the feeling was magical. It is nice to hide away and be quiet and rest and listen to the birds of the jungle.