Early morning. My tuk tuk driver picked me up before the sunrise. Big day. A day I was a guest at the very special Angkor Wat, Cambodia.
It is easy to get overwhelmed in such surreal places. I like to wander. Not one of those bullet point visitors. I enjoy being in places and not ‘doing’ them. Getting lost can be fun. As long as you know where is the end/beginning of your road.
Every temple evoke different feelings. Touching and smelling the ruins, creating stories, thinking of secrets that these walls might have hidden.
I stumbled upon a group of Khmer boys and girls. They were primping in front of the mirror. Putting on make up in order to transmogrify their faces. Boys and girls putting layers of powder to make sure those faces looked white enough.
Later I saw them posing for ‘authentic’ pictures. Those huge smiles. It felt that they did not really want to be there. Smiles were fake. Can you blame them? Standing for hours in a blistering heat and smiling. Smiling and smiling. Smiling again.
Yes, recent events have not been particularly pleasant. but don’t forget to smile.
Big genuine smiles.