Another day in Phnom Penh. We spent the day in the main city this time and visited the National Museum which is next to our hotel and then in the afternoon the Royal Palace.
The museum is interesting and filled with stone statues and doors etc. If we hadn’t been in Siem Reap last summer we would have enjoyed it more, but seeing these same statues and large blocks of Sanskrit stones out in temples was more rewarding somehow. Still the building these are housed in was lovely. I photographed that more. It was an art museum built in the early 1900s.
At lunchtime we sat out a huge rainstorm that reminded us we are in a tropical climate. The humidity is a bit oppressive at times but a cold glass of beer and fruit smoothies helps. We then visited a local, huge market. It was a little intense in the raw meat and wiggling fish/dried fish aspect. Tons of duck and hen eggs plus the black dirt ones were available. These are eggs that have been left in salt to kind of ferment and then stored in black dirt. The yolks are thick and solid yellow – somewhere between cooked and uncooked. The other ones are fertilized and then cooked so you eat an “egg” that includes a slightly crunchy beak, wings, and feet. We took photos and ate neither I have to say.
The palace is an interesting complex with many buildings being currently reconstructed but some finished and lovely. The King was in residence as his flag was flying. Our guide told us that he came to the throne of Cambodia a few years ago after 22 years in Paris as a ballet dancer. He is not married at the age of 63 but doesn’t need to be “because he spent many years in Paris as a ballet dancer.” We aren’t sure what that meant. The royal tour guides and staff plus King all wear different colored outfits related to the day of the week. It’s a lovely rainbow with today (Friday) being blue outfits and tomorrow purple. Interesting and colorful!
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