Tuesday, 7 February 2012

The Songbird Dies

Weep, Oh Gods and Goddesses of Love, And all men of stronger feelings! For the sparrow of my love is dead, The Sparrow, delight of my girl, Whom she loved more than her own eyes. For he was sweet as honey, and knew her as well as the girl knew her own mother, he never left her lap, but, hopping about here and there, chirped to his mistress alone. Now he goes down the dark road from which they say that no one returns. Now let evil be yours, evil shadow Orcus, that devastates everything beautiful! You’ve taken from me so beautiful a bird.

Translated from Latin

Review of The Ta Prohm Temple (Winner of the Young Times Travel Writer Competition)

The sun was blistering down on our heads as we waddled down the thin, sandy path. It was hot, and I mean hot, the hottest weather I’d ever been in. Cambodia is an amazing country, the culture, the stories of war and heroics. We were on our way to the Ta Prohm Temple in Siem Reap, a town in Cambodia. I expected it to be dazzling and vibrant, and also intact, but I saw something completely different, something I didn’t expect to see in a million years. If there were 5 words I could say to describe it they would be “The takeover of the Forest” and that is exactly what it looked like. All the walls were made of a grey brick and there was barely any roof except small bits left standing. A gigantic tree had sprouted up in one of the corners and the roots had literally climbed over the walls and rooms. It looked magical, like a scene out of a fairy tale. But this was real. There were cobwebs filling many of the rooms and monks wearing bright orange tunics, the colour of the sun. Statues of men holding pots filled to the brim with gold, were cracked and damaged, but still recognizable. The ground was not tiled nor was it paved, it was just dirt. There were large stones that resembled pillars on platforms but that had fallen down or been destroyed many decades before. There were often doorways and windows, leading straight into pitch blackness. This is not the only amazing thing about Cambodia, there are many other things to see and places to go. Overall I would recommend a trip to Cambodia to anybody who is thinking of taking an adventurous, interesting and fun-packed holiday. Good Luck!