A sobering experience

So, we all slept hard all night, and woke up around 8:00 this morning just in time for breakfast- American style!  The guest house served scrambled eggs, pancakes, and fresh pineapple.  It was so yummy!  After eating, we all piled into a van and rode to Tuol Sleng, the genocide museum from the rise of Khmer Rouge.  It was a former high school converted into a torture center at the height of the Khmer Rouge rule… it was so disturbing to walk through the halls and see the remnants of torture chambers, blood-stained floors, and photographs of innocent victims.  It is so hard to fathom such evil.

After such a depressing adventure, we moved on to a happier place- the waterfront in front of the king’s palace.  It almost felt like I was at Epcot center in Disney!  The waterfront was lined with flags flying for every nation imaginable (even an American flag!), and there were banners and signs everywhere.  Today is the king’s birthday, which is a holiday here.  It was quite festive and the city was bustling with excitement.  We walked around and took pictures, looking like the true tourists that we are.  The Cambodians had a good time laughing at us, but the teasing was good-natured and they were all really friendly.  We had lunch at a great restaurant, and the food was delicious!  (Cashew chicken for me- yum!)

We then went on to visit the Killing Fields, the area where millions of Cambodians were executed by Khmer Rouge soldiers.  There were empty mass graves, and a huge memorial in the center full of bones and skulls of the victims.  It was a beautiful area, yet haunting as everyone learned of the horrific events that took place there.  As we stood in front of the “Killing Tree,” I was overwhelmed at how easily evil can consume a person if he/she allows it.

We traveled back to our guest house, and spend the remainder of the evening resting.  Tomorrow we board a bus and take a 5-6 hour bus ride through the mountains to our next destination, Koh Kong.  Praising God for safety, protection, and provision, and for providing a loving relationship of freedom in Christ!

Tuol Sleng
Tuol Sleng
Phnom Penh
Phnom Penh
Phnom Penh
Phnom Penh
King’s palace in Phnom Penh
Killing Fields
Killing Tree at the Killing Fields
Mass graves at the Killing Fields

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