This season of Idyllwild Community Center speakers features local residents. Idyllwild residents Carol Martin and husband J.B. Leep are world travelers – Europe, China, Russia, Egypt, Morocco, Argentina, Peru, the Amazon and Kenya.
As part of the ICC series, Martin will present slides and discuss their recent trip to Southeast Asia – a month long small-ship cruise to Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore and Myanmar (formerly Burma).
Martin stressed that this would not be a standard travelogue with pictures but an attempt to present the stark contrasts she and her husband experienced on their trip – from the towering new architectural marvels and wealth of Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia, to ordinary villages in developing countries such as Cambodia, Vietnam and Myanmar, where people live as they have for centuries.
Martin’s blog of the trip contains photos, personal impressions, reminiscences, and comments that detail the rich tapestry of colors, sounds, sights and tastes that made the Southeast Asia adventure so extraordinary. Spoiler alert – view the blog for a preview only, since Martin’s comments and photos at the series will focus more on disparities in wealth and opportunity and their encounters with locals she and J.B. experienced and observed on the trip - http://www.travelpod.com/travel-blog/carolmartin/1/tpod.html.
Martin said she’d discuss challenges for achieving political stability and economic growth in the developing countries of Vietnam, Cambodia and Myanmar as well as providing personal travel tips for anyone interested in visiting the countries on their itinerary. Highlights of the trip included visits to Angkor Wat, the 12th century Buddhist temple in Cambodia, Phnom Phen, the Genocide Museum and the Killing Fields, the famed canals of Bangkok, the changes in Vietnam since the war and the breathtaking new architecture of Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.
“I fell in love with Cambodia,” said Martin. “The country has been through so much and yet the people were so welcoming and charming even with the difficult history. It was amazing to be in Myanmar since the country was only recently opened to tourists.”
Martin said she was also impressed with how so many religions seem to have existed peacefully, side by side for so long – Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, and animist in countries they visited.
Martin’s presentation takes place at 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 15, at Silver Pines Lodge.