Wednesday, August 23, 2006

SIEM REAP 11-12Aug2006

START ~ The Old Market 110806

Today we decide to check the Old Market out again, and hop on to Mr Leang's tuk-tuk. For a princely sum of $1 (to him), we are soon at the market.

This lady is selling some brownish pastes. People come and taste them. Quite tempting but I give it a pass. Don't want to risk upsetting my tummy.

Catfish and cockles. Catfish seem to be everywhere, of various sizes and shapes.
Posted by Picasa

The Fish-Ladies 110806

Markets are always interesting, and this one is no exception.

The lass in yellow and the fish-lady with her feet up. Yes, interesting indeed.

Feverishly cutting up the fish, more catfish. The place is dominated by ladies, just like the central market in Kota Bharu, Kelantan.

Maybe the Kelantanese did come from Champa Malays.

The Critters 110806

Lunch menu: baby terrapins stew, ginger-fried froggies with fish sauce, roasted catfish fillets.

The poor buggers desperately trying to get away. Would have made great pets instead.

The frogs have accepted their fate.

So too the catfish.
Posted by Picasa

The All-in-One Market 110806

The ubiquitous durian. Never had the chance to taste the local variety.

Next to the wet fish and critters market, we have a shiny, air-conditioned jewellery section.

And a few metres away, the famous bazaar for all your bargains.
Posted by Picasa

The Footwear 110806

The footwear section.

I've never seen shoes displayed this way before, in all my travels. Quite innovative. And the nails on the severed feet have varnish too. Nice touch.
Posted by Picasa

The Local Stuff 110806

Trinkets on sale, including lighters from Vietnam War era. Hang on, that's not local, right?

More local trinkets and curios. Aina is holding a wooden toad which can really croak, no kiddin'. :-)

Traditional puppets, grinning away.
Posted by Picasa

The Figurines 110806

The commercialisation of Angkor ...

... and the Buddha.

Four-faced ladies with funny hairdos?

Posted by Picasa

The Shop 110806

Ceremonial masks. I think the white one belongs to Hanuman.

Last time I checked, these guys were riding pillion on some bikes.

Hard bargaining in progress. I normally keep off. The girl says, come again tomorrow, bring more US dollars. Yeah, sure!
Posted by Picasa

The River 110806

US dollars all gone, we leave the Old Market and cross the road to this handsome colonial era building. Bury all the cables, and the place will be much prettier.

Siem Reap river is nearby, which upstream flows next to Angkor Thom. Downstream it empties into Tonle Sap. They take their river seriously here ...

... and the well-tended banks attract lunchtime picnickers.

I leave the river and decide to look for the mosque for my noon Friday prayer. See story HERE.

The Royal Independence Garden 110806

After a short afternoon rest, we go for a stroll and pass through the Royal Independence Garden.

Where these huge trees line up a footpath ...

... while becoming home to thousands of huge flying foxes ...

... really big ones! Most are asleep, while the few insomniac ones are making irritating screeching sounds.
Posted by Picasa

The Royal Residence 110806

The Royal Residence is at the edge of the garden, and the royal occupants are at home, hence the immediate vicinity of the building is out-of-bound.

And they'll be here till the weekend. 84-year-old King-Father of Cambodia Norodom Sihanouk (here seen with Queen Mother Monineath ("Monique") is no longer king ...

... that honour belongs to Norodom Sihamoni, his son. Single Sihamoni used to live in France as a ballet instructor.
Posted by Picasa

The Police 110806

Royal presence and security is tight around the perimeter of the Residence.

Cool-looking police bike, but I have no clue what make it is.

Note the French.
Posted by Picasa

The Convoy 110806

We walk towards the bridge across Siem Reap river ...

... and a convoy of tuk-tuks carrying more US dollars come our way noisily.

Kids fishing in murky Siem Reap river across the road from the Royal Residence, while the narrow bridge is congested with peak-hour traffic. Well, it was congested for just 15 min or so, so that's one short peak-hour.
Posted by Picasa