Thursday, October 2, 2008

P'chum Ben ceremony

One for the family album: LtoR: Veasna (brother-in-law), Phanno (nephew), Sopheap (sister), Phanna (niece), Pheany (aunt), Kimsan (mum), Sophoin, Hun (uncle)
One of the reasons I went to Kompong Cham was to join in the final days of the important 15-day P'chum Ben ceremony with my good friend Sophoin and her family. Sophoin lives and works in Phnom Penh but her family all live in Kompong Cham city and like many of her fellow countrymen, she travelled back to her homeland to join her family for this special occasion, to honour the dead, especially her father who died earlier this year and was cremated at the pagoda. However, it's not a solemn occasion as there was much merriment at the pagoda when we visited, though due respect was shown to the monks and laymen during the ceremonial parts of the morning's activities. Offerings of food, drink, clothing and money were made to the monks, to the spirits of the deceased and to say the pagoda, Wat Dei Doh, was heaving with hordes of people, is an understatement. It's a great opportunity for friends and relatives to meet up and exchange news, gossip, cement the family bond and everything else, and to do what all Cambodians love to do, pose for photographs. Sophoin and the female members of her family had been up since the early hours cooking food for the ceremony and for lunch, which is where we went after visiting the pagoda, to enjoy a gorgeous meal of chicken curry, cooked especially for me.
Sophoin (right) pays her respects in the main vihara at Wat Dei Doh
The faithful provide rice for the monks in the alms bowls
The vihara at Wat Dei Doh is packed with people listening to the chanting of the monks
These incense sticks caught alight just as this man approached the holder - he must've had singed eyebrows!
Sophoin takes a moment to pose in front of the vihara at Wat Dei Doh

3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Andy,
is Sophoin single? she's beautiful...
Best Regards - Tony, from Chau Doc, on my way to PP

October 3, 2008 at 2:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Andy
Pls don't cut the feet of yr subjects when framing! A nearly perfect pic of Sophoin was spoiled because you've let her feet off... Shame! - Amandla

October 3, 2008 at 3:11 PM  
Blogger Andy Brouwer said...

Hi Tony, yes she's single and a lovely sweet girl so keep your dirty paws off her. Only kidding. She's one of my very best friends and has been an absolute diamond since I moved to live in Phnom Penh. I really hope she finds someone who deserves her in the future.
Sorry Amanda, my photography must improve in a few areas, framing is one of them!
Andy

October 3, 2008 at 9:08 PM  

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