We went to visit S21 Jail. They converted a school into a prison for all the people they were going to kill later. There at the jail they tortured the people to get as much info as they could about there families. They rounded up all the intelectuals as they called them, teachers, doctors, lawyers etc. and then got them to devulge where the rest of their family was hiding or living by torturing them. The torture is too gruesome to mention. It was the most sobering thing I have ever seen in my entire life, as well as the saddest.
From there we went to the killing fields and saw the mass murders that were done. Mass graves everywhere and the skulls of thousands of victims. As you walk around the mass graves you can still see pieces of bones on the ground as well as teeth everywhere. Every time there is floods because of much rain, during the rainy season, bones still keep surfacing. It is a terrible sight. There are some 143 such sites that were discovered in Cambodia. This is the only site we visited and believe me, that was enough.
At this site we met up with Ralph Bromley of Kelowna as well as two other gentleman we connected with that were from Toronto & Kelowna. One was Dave & the other David. A divine connection for the future work to be done in Cambodia as we network together.
All of our gudies we used had family members that were killed in this horrific tradgedy. Most people in Cambodia were affected one way or another. Very sad to hear and hard to listen their stories. It is something we will never forget as long as we live. We drove back to our hotel and it was hard to sleep that night after what we had all seen that day.
The next day we left for Siem Reap. This was a whole day ride in a rented bus for 16 of us and all our luggage. We wanted to drive accross Cambodia and mingle with the people and get the heart of the nation.
We stopped several times to visit markets so we could buy things for the kids we would be visiting in the next few days. Some of the foods for sale at these markets were a bit different from our foods in Canada. We had choices between huge black spiders, small frogs, all kinds of bugs etc. Needless to say our purchases were few and far between as far protein was concerned. We managed to find bananas and mangoes.
We also stopped at some stone carving shops and everything was still done with primitive tools. We then went to visit Angor What, one of the wonders of the world. This is one of the biggest temples in the world.
The ruins of this temple date back many many years, and the spiritual atmosphere of the place is total darkness as far I am concerned. One visit in a lifetime is enough for me. Their teachings are nothing but brainwashing beliefs, and cannot understand how people could believe such nonsense.
From there we drove to Poipet and believe me I have seen poverty before (i.e. Manila, Mexico etc.) but nothing like the poverty in Cambodia especially around the villages. There is literally garbage everywhere and I mean everywhere.
We have not been able to connect on internet in many places in Cambodia and that is why we haven't been able to keep contact with you. Now we are back in Thailand and we will continue this blog either tomorrow or the next day. we are quite tired from our Cambodia trip and need to get some much needed rest. Talk to you soon.
Ernie & Joane