Large and artfully worked hard sandstone constituted the banks of this pond. In some places, terraces descended into the water. The stones were weathered but the rim was fairly well preserved. A stone causeway of some 15 meter width and 200 meter length led to the artificial island on which is built the entire temple complex of Angkor Wat. The balustrades along this causeway represented the body of the mythical snake called Naga, which is often used with five or more heads to decorate stairways and railings.
At about 7 in the morning, a long line of monks in orange gowns walked along this causeway with their begging bowl under their arms. This looked so photogenic that I ran to get my camera and took several photographs. Unfortunately, because it was so early, the colors did not show very well on the resulting pictures.
|For my description of Angkor I will supplement my own experiences with information from the Angkor guidebook. Photographs and films proved disappointing because of lack of light, color and depth (and expertise). Especially this first morning was too drizzly to get any good photographs.
However, I was very much impressed by the ruins of Angkor, even more so after my second visit. So what the Japanese say did not apply: "He who never climbs Mount Fuji is a fool, as is he who does it twice." I could have said that based on the abominable roads from Bangkok to Angkor, but certainly not on the merits of Angkor itself!