Lane and I would like to do some shopping. (I found the shopping in Thailand disappointing and am still hoping to finish off my Christmas list.) Choeun offers to take us to a crafts center and the others are willing to go along. . . But first, of course, we must first tour the workshops.I’m prepared to be bored, but the tour is interesting. Artisans of Angkor is a program established to keep traditional Cambodian crafts alive while providing work to the disadvantaged.
It seems like a well-run program and produces lovely items. On the tour we see people doing silk painting, lacquer work, and carving in wood and sandstone. All of it is interesting, but I particularly like the carved wooden statues dressed in their paper patterns as they await the final carving.
The silk workshop is in another town, but in the shop I find lovely nubby silks in rich jewel tones – none of which are for sale by the meter. Dang! The silk is so beautiful here. It is not as light and fine as the silk in Thailand, but it is far more lively and interesting.
Back at the hotel, the pool awaits.
But first, a call to the front desk – our air conditioning has gone out. Someone arrives almost immediately and checks the power (which has already gone out on several previous occasions, due, I suspect, to the ongoing construction in our wing). My guess is a blown fuse, but soon we have a worker crawling around in the ceiling.
Not thinking this was a problem that would take long to address, I hadn’t first changed into my swimsuit. Now, I pace the floor, impatiently watching the sparkling blue water beyond my window.
I want to be out there!
I finally decide I am not going to spend my last precious afternoon pacing in my hotel room. I’m sure the hotel workers are mortified, but I grab my swim suit and a change of clothes and duck into the bathroom. When I emerge again, one workman has completely disappeared into the ceiling while the other has gone to fetch something. They don’t appear to be making a lot of progress. . .
Soon I’m in the pool. The water is perfect, refreshing and wonderful.