Juliet my sweet. Don't expect to visit too many temples in Vietnam. I'm done with temples.
Huge numbers of tourists. Many in tour groups. There was one group of Asians, I'm unsure from which country, of at least 200, all in white clothes with green caps, like a huge sports team, but all over 60. Tuk tuk pandemonium. Tour bus chaos. Tour guide heaven? ? ? No, not my type of guiding. But they seem to be competing for most colourful umbrella to hold aloft......
Okay. The temples were pretty amazing, and with a guide, a guide book, or a bit of knowledge of the local history, it might all make a bit more sense. My thoughts however were.....
What a enormous amount of effort has gone into building such amazing building. 800 years ago.. How much did it cost, financially, and in life's lost? And why did they need so many temples? And why have they been abandoned? And why have parts been destroyed? Some of the questions I know the answers to, and some of the answers just present more questions. Hmmmmm.
Today I met a young Germany couple who have driven their VW Combie from Germany. They have been on the road eight months, and are getting close to running out of funds. They now have to decide whether to drive home, or ship their van.
I also talked to a Greek guy, ( you don't meet too many Greeks out of Greece, New York or Melbourne). He's been living in Thailand three years, and loves it, but is spending sometime in Cambodia, as he found he was just too relaxed, and doing nothing in Thailand, and life was passing him by to quick.
I also had an interesting chat to a young Cambodia waitress, who served me up a reasonable Mexican dish, (one advantage of being in a tourist area). We talked about tourism, working in Seim Reap, and her plans for the future.
In all these exchangers, I reckon I was able to pass the message that New Zealanders are pretty nice people. We are interested in folk from other places. I think I helped, just a little, with world peace. In fact, I think I've been helping throughout my journey. The only hiccup was on Day 1, just out of Melbourne, when I upset that young Aussie dope head, who then proceeded to chase me down the road. But then we all know that Aussies feel threatened by Kiwis, so I can accept his frustration.
How did I get on to this topic? Perhaps it's all about chatting to others, and letting them know you and your country are pretty much okay guys, that we can get along just fine. The temples and all they represented sort of set me off. Are they, have they, do they help different races and people understand each other, or do they just feed the fire? I don't think I should visit any more temples, cathedrals, churches, castles or fortifications.
I'm already wondering whether I will visit the Killing Fields? I'm close, but do I really want to see it first hand. I know the history. It sickens me that we can do such horrible things to fellow human beings. Perhaps I'll just stick to happy Hellos, friendly waves, and pleasant chats, and letting those I chat to know that Kiwis are friendly, compassionate, and a little bit crazy, but happy to share our world, in peace.