2013年4月4日 星期四

Khmer (高棉) or Cambodia (柬埔寨)-2

A map of Cambodia at the height of its powers at the 12th to 13th centuries

Cambodia Culture

Cambodians eat
rice as their staple food, supplemented by noodles and
fish from Tonle Sap and use kaffir lime, lemon grass, garlic, fish
sauce, soy sauce,  tamarind, ginger, oyster sauce, coconut milk and
black pepper for seasoning. They also eat plenty of red curry and French
bread.Traditionally, the Khmer people recorded Khmer legends, prayers
and the origin of Buddhism on books made with Tra leaves, wrapped
carefully in cloth to protect them from moisture and the climate.

Cambodian dance can be divided into three main categories: stylzied
Khmer classical dance, folk dance done to the tune of mahori music
whilst court dances are like those of Thailand. The dances are performed
by intricately costumed, highly trained men and women on public
occasions for tribute, invocation or to enact traditional stories and
epic poems such as Reamker, the Khmer version of the Ramayana Known
formally as Robam Preah Reach Trop ("theater of royal
wealth") it is set to the music of a pinpeat ensemble accompanied by a
vocal chorus.Social dances are those performed by guests at banquets,
parties or other informal social gatherings. Khmer traditional social
dances are analogous to those of other Southeast Asian nations. Examples
include the circle dances Romvong and Romkbach as well as Saravan and
Lam Leav. Modern western popular dances including Cha-cha, Bolero, and
the Madison, have also influenced Cambodian social dance.

most celebrated holiday every year is the Bon Om Teuk (Festival of Boat
Racing), the annual boat rowing contest, held at the end of the rainy
season when the Mekong river begins to sink back to its normal levels
allowing the Tonle Sap River to reverse flow and engages in
cockfighting, soccer, and kicking a sey, which is similar to a footbag.
Based on the classical Indian solar calendar and Theravada Buddhism, the
Cambodian New Year is a major holiday that takes place in April.

Day 1 of the Trip

The independence Monument, a stupa, at Phnom Penh. Cambodia became independent from France again on 9th November 1953. In 1863, when Cambodia was then under the joint suzerainty of two of its powerful neighbors, Thailand and Vietnam, their king Norodom I sought protection from France and in 1867, he signed a treaty with France in 1867 whereby in return for France giving control over the two provinces Battambang
and Siem Reap where over a million Khmers had settled but which
officially belonged to Thailand in those days, he surrendered suzerainty over the country to France which undertook to defend it against Thailand and Vietnam but these two provinces were returned by France to Thailand in 1906. In 1978, Vietnam invaded Cambodia when the Khmer Rouge forces  attempted to regain control over these two provinces which had by that time come under Vietnamese control.

Our first stop was the highest hill in Phnom Penh, the 27-metre Gold Pagoda Hill

The palace wall

entrance to the Royal Palace with the Silver Pagoda (Preah Vihear Preah
Keo Morakot formerly called Wat Ubosoth Ratanaram) popular called Wat
Preah Keo in the background

A pattern on the gate to the palace

A royal window shade

a mural on the wall of the royal palace

Silver Pagoda which is the royal temple.The vihara houses many national
treasures such as gold and jeweled Buddha statues. Most notable is a
small 17th century baccarat crystal Buddha (the "Emerald Buddha" of
Cambodia) and a life-sized gold Maitreya Buddha decorated with 9584
diamonds, the largest of which weighs 25 carats. It was created in the
palace workshops during 1906 and 1907. The Silver Pagoda was inlaid with
more than 5,000 silver tiles and some of its outer facade was
remodelled with Italian marble. However only a small area of these tiles
are available to be viewed by the public on entering the pagoda.

The gold Buddha dressed in royal regalia, commissioned by King Sisowath, weighs about 90 kilos

A gold tree inside the temple

Two golden elephants at the museum attached to the temple

A silver flower at the museum

A small shrine behind the temple

The recreation hall of the King

The King's Palace

The Cobra is as the sacred serpent (naga) the National Totem

A god holding up the roof of the palace

National lady's costume for formal occasions

Various tombs of Cambodian kings and queens

A close up of one of the royal tombs

A statue of the king in front of the tomb

A statue at the royal garden

A royal boat cart to be pulled by two elephants

Tradtional farm implements on display at the side of the temple museum

musicians playing some traditional instruments outside of the temple museum. They invited me to play the drum with them. I did!

We were taken on a tour of the river on one of these boats

Another cobra sculpture at the pier

The Mekong River seen on a boat during water tour of the river

On the bank we can see some new buildings on the left of the new photo. Otherwise, there are not very many tall buildings

These are the boat people who came from Vietnam

More boat houses in the Vietnamese water village

6 則留言:

  1. 域 流亦詩 Louis Rick2013年4月4日 下午2:27

    [版主回覆04/05/2013 09:01:25]90 years of French rule amounts to more than 3 generations. Some French taste ought to have survived. Even on the kerbside of the streets everywhere, you can find mobile snack stalls selling French baquette sandwiches.

  2. It seems Cambodia and Thailand have quite a lot of culture in common through the influence of buddhist religion.
    [版主回覆04/05/2013 09:05:05]I believe that Thai architectural style is very much influenced by the original Khmers who first arrived in Cambodia from India: Indian Buddhism was originally a reformed version of Hinduism, more or less the same way that Christianity is a reformed version of Judaism.

  3. 這裡的建築與泰國很相近,
    [版主回覆04/05/2013 10:54:26]You're right. The war has interrupted its economy but recently there's been massive foreign investments in infra-structure building, mining etc and its GDP has been growing at between 6-7% per annum in the past decade.

  4. The Cambodian "Mona Lisa" is still there smiling amongst the azaleas.
    The humble musicians are still playing with subdued smiles on their faces.
    The golden pagodas are still shining proudly under the sun.
    Water still runs quietly through the Mekong River, seemingly oblivious to the bleeding days.
    How could I forget this place?
    I know the road ahead is still bumpy for the Cambodians but I sincerely wish them all the best!
    [版主回覆04/05/2013 10:51:23]Nature is indifferent. Laotse said long ago: 天地不仁,以萬物為芻狗. Shakespeare said: As flies to wanton boys are we to the gods; they kill us for their sport. But we are human. We cannot remain unmoved by human suffering.

  5. Seems a beautiful trip with great weather.
    [版主回覆04/05/2013 16:53:37]Yeah, I was lucky that the weather was fine but during the daytime, temperatures may rise to 40 degrees Celsius and it's so easy to get heat strokes.

  6. 大顯身手打大鼓,
    [版主回覆04/09/2013 09:37:37]I just played some simple rhythms on the drum.