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Entries in Phnom Penh (8)


Three Years Ago Today

Three years ago today I was standing in front of this exquisite pagoda-like structure at the Royal Palace complex in Phnom Penh. [NOTE: I remember that there was a delicious, cool breeze in the shade where I took the picture]. 


Saffron Robes

From a small street in the center of Phnom Penh. 


Book Launched

We had a luxurious venue in the Imperial Hotel in Phnom Penh (thx, Thibault). Table cloths, and simultaneous translation, and wireless headphones, and crystal water glasses, and comfy chairs, and chandeliers, and frigid air conditioning, and a huge banner with the name of the book and all the institutional logos. And an outer room with lovely posters of the WWF Greater Mekong Rattan Project, and fruit, and pastries, and hot beverages. And representatives from the local media, government offices, and several conservation NGOs. And brief talks by the head of the Rattan Association of Cambodia, the Country Director of WWF, local rattan botanist, Khou Eang Hourt, and me. What a book launch. A total success and great fun.

[NOTE: The book, the cover of which is shown on the poster to the left of the projection screen, looks, feels, and smells great].


Back in Phnom Penh

Arrived to Cambodia this afternoon. Will be here about a week. Training workshop with WWF rattan team and then the much-awaited book launch on Thursday. Should have a bit of free time tomorrow to visit some favorite spots, e.g. Silver Pagoda, the Royal Palace and the National Museum. [NOTE: I can't wait to see what a book launch is].

Earrings, Silk Scarf, and Maybe a Buddha

Exhilarating ride through Phnom Penh on the way to the Russian Market ("Psar Tuol To Pong") to buy some handicrafts before heading home. My Cambodian student, Neak Phearoom, is driving the scooter. [NOTE: It was the brakes, or lack of brakes, that made the trip most memorable (thx, Phearoom)].


Phnom Penh

Slow ride in a tuk-tuk down down Sisowath Quay street along the waterfront of the Tonle Sap river in Phnom Penh. The lovely architecture at 0:28 is the Royal Palace (see Buddha and Palms and Call Me By My True Name). Can't have too many tuk-tuks. Or motorcycles. Or monks in saffron robes. Vibrant, beautiful city.


Buddha and Palms


It was scorching hot the morning we went to the Royal Palace (see Call Me By My True Name and Ganesha II) in Phnom Penh. To find a little bit of shade, we climbed the stairs to Phnom Mondap and encountered exquisite Buddha statues wrapped in golden silk, a peaceful glen of palms, and a cool breeze. [NOTE: Phnom Mondap (library) used to house an extensive collection of sutra books written on palm leaves. The palm books are now archived in an air-conditioned facility].



Taken in one of the side streets of Phnom Penh during my walk to the Silver Pagoda (see Silver Pagoda). A saffron robe, a shoulder bag, and a begging bowl. Period. [NOTE: The mix of colors and the mood is what draws me into this photo].