S-21 and the Killing Fields

Dad, what a day.

We went to S-21 first today, a prison in Phnom Penh. It was an eye opener. I am sure you knew the full history surrounding it, but I am ashamed to say  my knowledge was lacking slightly. 

My eyes have been opened. I can’t say you would have enjoyed it, it is not a place to enjoy. The atrocity and sadism that went on is unreal. Especially when you think this happened recently in historical terms. Your generation really. The images and sights will stick with me for a very long time. I did not take a single photo, it is not something I need reminding of, I don’t think I will ever loose the image. 

After the prison, we took a coach to the killing fields. This is where the prisoners from S-21 were taken. It was horrific dad. Mass graves. They say that over 8000 bodies have been unearthed, but they know at least 20000 are buried there. With the moat horrific circumstances surrounding their deaths. They had built bridges over the graves, because with earth movements and flooding, bones were zurfacing and people were accidentally standing on them. Walking round you could see bones sticking our of the ground. 

In the centre there was a tall square building which held the uncovered bones. The bones has little coloured stickers on to indicate how they believed this person died. It was enough to make you feel sick.  

The bus ride coming back into town was silent. 

For lunch  (despite the fact no was felt hungry) we were taken to a place called ‘friends and stuff’. A charity that helps poor and unfortunate children by providing then with cooking and hospitality skills. It was great, and the food was wonderful. A definite up lift from the morning. 

After lunch we went to a silk shop. We were all too exhausted (mentally and physically) to do much else so we went back to the ship for the afternoon. 

Our evening entertainment was a group of children from a local orphanage. I read a poster at lunch that said ‘80% of children in orphanages are not orphans’. I am guessing that means they were abandoned. Either way there was this girl performing. Around 9 years old. Big bright eyes. I don’t know what it was, maybe the way she moved, or how she held herself. Maybe her hair flicking down her back, I don’t know – but she reminded me of Becca. If I could have taken her home with me I would have! Life and opportunities around this area seem lacking. 

After the performance I needed a drink. Our bar man Mitch was no where in site so our guide Sarou told me to make it myself. So I did. 

My measurements may be slightly different to Mitch’s, and I did not know my way around his bar, but I made myself a pretty good Mojito. As I was finishing making my drink Mitch turned up and laughed at me. He didn’t see my drink was a quadruple shot. Just as well really. 

The rest of the tour was intrigued with what I was drinking and they all wanted to try it. Mitch was over run with mojito orders and is almost out of mint. – kind of shot myself in the foot there, now I can’t have another. 

With the whole group drinking cocktails, and still getting over our morning, no one really wanted to go out for dinner. So we decided it would be a good idea to order pizza to the boat! Sarou was very confussed, but he sorted out the language barrier for us. Apparently we are the first tour ever to order pizza to the ship.

I have also just been informed it is Mitch’s night off. The replacement bar tender does not speak English or know how to make a mojito. I now have a new job on the ship for the evening! 

One round of mojito’s coming up! – with my measures of course! I am now the new favourite person on the ship….. 

Bar tender drinks for free right?!

Night dad x

Pizza arrived…. they may have been an issue with the language barrier. Nine pizzas arrived…. all small. To feed seventeen people. Worked out at like two slices each. Oh well, breakfast should be fun tomorrow! 


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