For the first time in over two months I am watching the news on TV. CNN in the hotel bar here in Siem Reap, Cambodia, trying to find out more about what's happened in Paris, trying to wrap my head around it, hoping my extended family is okay. And when the bar manager came up to ask me what was going on, I realized that he and his staff did not know. So I explained. And I suddenly felt so foolish. I've come, briefly, to a country mainly to renew my visa but also to play tourist, and I know next to nothing about what these lovely people have been through in their own lifetimes. Today when talking to our guide about the Paris attacks, he said, "Oh. We had ISIS thirty years ago. The Killing Fields".
We all know about the Killing Fields, but we don't sit down and really think about how close that happened in our past. And our guide, who grew up in a Cambodian monastery (we're guessing he was orphaned during the civil war) learned how to speak English from an Australian UN soldier in 2000. I don't know, maybe I'm being silly, but I'm overwhelmed by how small I feel in the universe, and how far away I feel from my family. Tomorrow I go to Angkor Wat, a trip I've wanted to do as long as I can remember, and I hope I can find some peace and understanding amongst the symmetry and holiness of the structures.