The Jolie-Pitts are in Cambodia to research a movie she’s working on. We were there about a decade ago. What a lovely country with wonderful people but such a sad, sad history.
If you watch Survivor you can see how gorgeous Cambodia is. Angor Wat is one of the most stunning places I’ve ever visited. But it will take a while, maybe a couple more generations, for the country to recover from the damage done by Pol Pot and his crew. They are still so poor. One woman at the hotel cried when I tipped her the equivalent of $8 for a massage. Another man at the hotel wiped tears away when we ordered the Khmer Rouge tasting menu, so excited we wanted to sample his country’s culinary heritage.
What does this have to do with Angelina Jolie? You can’t go anywhere there without seeing her picture. It’s on signs for hairdressers, on postcards, on begging cards from landmine victims. You remember her first son Maddox was adopted from Cambodia.
Now, a lot of people don’t like Angie. They blame her–still!–for splitting up Brad and Jen. They don’t believe she’s sincere about her lobbying for refugees even though she goes to some of least pap friendly places on the planet. But you can’t sell that in Cambodia. A decade ago she was granted Cambodian citizenship by royal decree for her work on local environmental issues. Of course, her roots go back further to the Lara Croft filming days.
In Cambodia, Angelina Jolie is a saint. Not that they technically have saints in Buddhism.