I arrived about 4:30 AM and was alone except for a few monks that were moving about, preparing for their morning offerings. The mist and humidity hung thick in the air, and you can really feel it in this shot. The whole scene was 200% dreamy, and the thick layer of fog made it impossible for my eyes or camera to focus on anything except for the impressionist vision itself.
This was one of my favorite temples in Cambodia. The various restoration foundations left this temple largely untouched, and they allowed the jungle growth to continue winding its way into the ancient stones. I also liked that there was hardly anyone around, leaving me to explore it in relative peace.
The apsaras sprung from the churned milk of the Rig Veda and entertain the gods and fallen heroes with their dancing winsome ways. Every apsara is in a slightly different pose as thousands of them stare outwards from the ruins in and around Angkor Wat. Each figure is almost a millennia old, and they still maintain the fine craftsmanship through the tropical growth and the jungle heat.
These are the golden heads of Suryavarman II in Angkor Thom in Cambodia. His face is all over every tower in every direction. I can only imagine a similar temple with Hillary’s grizzled visage staring out in every direction…
We call him "Survivorman" among my friends because we play a lot of Civilization IV and the Khmers are one of the races that always comes up. We have trouble saying his real name, so now we just default to the Discovery Channel guy.
And yes… I know this picture is BUSY, but that’s okay when you wanna get busy with this sorta thing.