May 6th, 2010. Early morning.
We rode 20 early morning kilometers to reach the small temple complex at the foothills of Kullen mountain. The tiny temple is profusely decorated, so delicately, that it “could only have been created at the hand of women”.
The most surrounding Banteay Srei
Unlike most other temples in the Angkor complex, Banteay Srei was not commissioned by the Royal family, It was built by the Jayavarman V’s rajaguru (Royal teacher) which probably explains the temple’s diminutive size. Almost scaled for children, the divert the available resources were used to carving the rock than lifting them.
Banteay Srei reflected in the moat
Early morning or late evening brings out the character in the red sandstone used in the construction. Banteay Srei immediately reminds me of the Hoysaleshwara temple at Hallebid.
So overwhelmed was I with such a strange request that I turned my bag upside down to find my little notebook, and three four pens of different colors to give to him. “For my school”, he said guiltily and took away my heart.