As I approached the palace, there was a crowd of people gathering around to pay their respects to their beloved king. Some people were sitting on the ground watching a TV screen that provided historical highlights of the king father's life.
But in the midst of all of this, one couldn't help but notice the vendors who were using this opportunity to sell all sorts of items. One vendor was selling flowers.
Several vendors had printed different photos of the king Father and were using this period of mourning to sell pictures of the the king. These vendors seem to be the most popular attracting crowds of people who were encircling them vying for the best photo.
|Looking to buy a photo of the king father|
|A vendor selling joss sticks|
It is not common to see these sights of public grief as in many Asian cultures, tears are often viewed as a sign of weakness and so they are often shed in private. Yet here were many openly showing their emotions. For a nation that is still recovering from the Khmer Rouge era and trauma from that period, scenes like this display emotional vulnerability in a corporate sense. Pray for the Cambodian people that through the sadness and loss they feel, they may experience comfort and strength from the One who can give meaning and hope to life's greatest losses.