To spend even a few hours with this man you get a strong sense of what drives him. Bun lost his father, younger brother and sister when he was 10 to the war. He became a Buddhist monk at 20. Now he devotes his life to his business, his 11 adopted children, baby daughter and his community. He has a remarkable outlook on life, he invites guests into his home to give them a taste of the real Cambodia. The money he makes educates the village children and provides a much needed boost to the local economy, he employs people from his neighbourhood, shops at his local market. During a trip to the local market for breakfast it was easy to see the love the community has for him. His philosophy is simple, if you create something with love and good intentions then you will be rewarded in life.
It was a brilliant few days, exploring the temples. I was astounded by the immensity of them and how they remained hidden from the world for 400 years. I took my time, only going in the morning and afternoons, taking time out in the middle of the day to escape the heat. Each time I went to a new temple it became my favourite, they were all beautiful for different reasons.
Ta Phrom was truly amazing, it stood out from the rest because of the atmospere. We went out early morning, long before the temple was open, Bun pulled the car over on the side of the road and we walked along a track between the jungle and the ancient wall surrounding the temple, the noise of the cicadas and birds was deafening. We climbed over a crumbling part of the wall and walked through the jungle towards the temple, arriving at a ancient relic overgrown with massive trees and the root systems that had entwined themselves throughout the temple. There was no one there but us, we sat in silence, the birds overhead. I imagined this was how it must have been for those that discovered these beautiful structures, every now and again the breeze would gust and there was something very mystical about it. Soon enough the tourists arrive and like ants they infiltrate every corner ofbthe temple, it’s time to leave, I was lucky to have that time.