#3 - The Bayon by Moonlight
Well past midnight, under glistening moonlight, the Bayon Temple forms an imposing sight. In the
darkness I head inside one of Angkor's most celebrated temples, a tiny flashlight in my hand to
illuminate the way. The atmosphere is eerie as I clamber over centuries of rubble, past empty halls
populated by long-dead monks, and up towards the top gallery where my subject awaits.
I find him with a wave of my torch. His smile is gentle, and his sheer size is truly humbling (and
just a little bit terrifying under the current conditions). Under daylight he is a postcard and a
landmark; a relic for tourists to gawk at. But tonight, spotlit against a brilliant pre-dawn sky, he
becomes who he really is: Jayavarman VII, builder of the Bayon Temple. King of the Khmers.