Cambodia / Phil / Travel

and we’re back!

Ashley and I have clearly neglected our blog for which we’re sorry. We’d proclaim that one of our joint New Years resolutions was not to do so, but with the wedding there is a chance it might happen again. So! How about this instead. Our resolution is to not let our blog sit idle for longer than a month… and if we do be sure to email all complaints to Ashley.

Now for a brief update from this side of the pond.

On December 3, 2012 Ashley, myself and eight of our friends ran in the 2012 Angkor Wat International Half Marathon. The Angkor Wat run was my first half marathon and Ashley’s third (one in Phuket and one around Nichada Thani just to make sure she could do it). I’m sure any future runs we do will be rewarding, but there is something about doing a charity run for children and people with disabilities that makes completing the run that much more meaningful.

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The half marathon route starts at 6:30, just as sunrise lights up Angkor Wat, and takes you around the park and along side some of Cambodia’s best known attractions. At the first bend the runners are joined by the local wheel chair participants who race alongside the pack (that said they might have started with us I just had not had a chance to see them until the bend). Dotted along the sides of the route are small villages whose children stand along side the road cheering runners on and sticking their hands out in the hopes for a high-five.

On the race course, the first temple you pass by is Ta Prohm. Ta Prohm is a unique temple even when compared to others in the Angkor Wat park. After the rediscovery and restoration of Angkor Wat most of the jungle that had swallowed the various temples was cleared. However, in Ta Prohm several trees had grown into the temples making it impossible to remove them. The trees actually support the structures in some parts which gives it a very unique feel.Image

Running past Ta Prohm we passed several smaller temples before making our way to the Bayon. The Bayon is my favorite temple in the whole park and you can read more about the history and significances at the Bayon Wikipedia page. The site is definitely worth spending some extra time exploring, which we did the day before, but after running ten miles I was happy to keep on running.

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Shortly after I passed the Bayon the park was opened to the public. The tourists and the buses were annoying but not that big of a distraction. Elephants, however, get your attention. The elephant seemed anxious about all the runners but fortunately it stayed on its side of the road allowing the race to continue.

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What else is there to say? Left foot, right foot, left foot and then you’ve finished. All that’s left is a victory beverage.

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Ashley and I enjoyed the weekend and the run immensely and we are already talking about going back to for a second run. (and hopefully our friends at DC Hotpot will join us second time around). But in the mean time we’re limiting our runs to five miles or less.

You can trace the Angkor Wat International Half Marathon route on their website.

I have also posted all my photos from the run on my Flickr page.

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