I don't think I'll be able to find a developing lab anytime soon, so for now I will be using pictures shot on my Ipod.
Cambodia is a very sobering place to visit, especially when going there straight from Thailand. It is still recovering from a horrific genocide at the hands of the Khmer Rouge. Between 1975-1979 the Communist Khmer Rouge regime killed off a quarter of the country's population. If you opposed them in any way, were an intellectual (wearing glasses automatically made you one), or were educated in any field, you were killed. So it's not surprising that this had a profound effect on Cambodia's development. Unlike Thailand, it is a very poor country, where roughly 53% of the population lives on less than $2 per day.
Arriving via plane was an almost mystical experience. As we touched down, I could see beautiful foliage that stretched for miles. I saw no metropolitan skyscrapers or the like. The first thing I noticed outside the airport, was how quiet everything was - almost eerily quiet. It felt like a land from the old times, before globalization reached out its hand.
In fact, if Siem Reap has any fast food joints, I have been kept blissfully unaware of them. Unlike Thailand, full of its McDonalds and 7-Eleven chains, Cambodia seems quite untouched. I have only been in one city so far, but I love it! The street food, while not as good as Thailand's, is cheap and decent.
Yesterday, I went to Angkor Wat, the largest religious monument in the world. It is housed in a giant complex, which is also home to several other temples. It was incredible; pictures cannot do it justice! As I walked toward the building, I imagined Angkor as it was, hundreds of years ago - multitudes of Hindus and Buddhists walking about. While I usually don't care about monuments and structures, I would HIGHLY recommend everyone visit it sometime, especially if already traveling in Southeast Asia.
My name is Yonah Paley. I quit my job in the United States to travel. I also write movies and do photography. As I backpack across the world, I share stories, philosophy, and travel tips.