I spent a good two hours of the bus ride from Bangkok to Poipet gazing three seats ahead at the Cambodian mother kissing her sweet baby. Ahh, the flutter of my heart and the patter of that good old biological clock!
The mother would kiss all up and down the baby’s soft, pudgy arm, then go, “Mumumum!” as she nibbled up the tiny caramel-colored fingers. The baby was in heaven, and squealed with delight. She was loved!
I have seen a lot of mother love, but there is something about the smooch-filled adoration of Cambodian mothers with their dimpled babies that brings a glow to your soul.
Perhaps it is no surprise, then, that Cambodian Mother Nature also kisses all over her darling jewels. Yes, I am talking about the trees in Angkor Wat.
Talking with any tourist who has been to more than a few temples in the hundred-building complex of Angkor Wat, he or she will inevitably emphasize the awesomeness of the trees twisting through the thousand-year structures.
It’s magical: the unearthly glow of the leaves… the intricate, centuries-old carvings peeking from behind roots… the moss-dappled green-gray of the stones embraced by the silvery brown of the trunk… Sometimes you can’t quite tell where the temple ends and where the tree begins.
The Angkor Wat maintence team has cut away the vegetation from a number of temples, but for others they have wisely left it intact.
After all, both tree and temple are reaching for the cosmos!