5/13/2005

We had another morning in Siem Reap before we left for Phnom Penh, which we dutifully took to explore the Old Market (Psar Chaa)... I wasn't interested in the textiles and the merchandise, though I did take some photos... but what we found was cheap food! Plain baguettes for 200 riel, Cambodian tau sar piah and assorted dishes with rice.

Our bus would leave at noon. We finally left Angkor Green, which wasn't the best hotel in the world... i mean they forced us out of our room into another one the morning we were to leave for Angkor.

The small bus brought us to the big terminal where the big bus was. It was a whole bazaar of people, and many other people were heading to Phnom Penh, apparently, not just tourists like us. It was a huge bus, as promised, with toilet, just like the huge ones in Taiwan which play CDs and DVDs, except this particular bus played Cambodian comedy shows... didn't get much... I know roughly that they made jokes with a Cambodian guy pretending to be Carlos Santana and saying "I am Carlos Santana" and "love" and other simple words in the only English he knew, while they all laughed in Khmer.

At one of the rest stops one of the women from the bus got off to get some fried spider... traditional Cambodian hospitality meant she offered some to Alex... who bit the legs off with glee... I think its spider, I took a photo.

The roads sucked... more potholes and dirt, but slightly better than Hwy 6... I think we were on Hwy 1. We drove into Phnom Penh as the sun set... across the Japanese bridge spanning the Tonle Sap and driving down, dropping us at the Central Bus Terminal... we had a little walk and found a guesthouse "The Last Home", which was one of the first ones we looked at... but it had a really big room and we were happy with it so we took it.

Phnom Penh is another place with wide boulevards and vestiges of French colonial architecture... it was also full of honking motorbikes because, guess what, it's New Year too, and they have water in it... so we still had to be careful. We strolled down Sisowath quay, a lovely waterside promenade... we were also looking for "Happy Pizza" to be happy people!

We ate some and got some pizza back where we would relax at our balcony with a TV! There was also a low beam coming down from the ceiling which Lip would periodically walk into, upon which he'd fall on the bed and start writhing. The toilet was also interesting, as Alex said he could see cockroaches fucking.

It was soccer then, and a Jean-Claude Van Damme B-grade movie on Star Movies, together with shitty pizza that made you feel sleepy. Life.

2 comments:

medellia said...

Cambodia was awesome and i'm planning my third visit back again in July to visit some friends, only that this time i'm travelling through Bangkok and i've never really tried that route. Care to share your experience with me and give me some advice because i'll be on my own?

Jesse said...

Do arrange your visa in Bangkok, it's a bit cheaper and less hassle than doing it at the border, it was 1000 baht for us when it could be done for about 20 USD.

Poipet is not a very fun border town, try not to get stuck there. It's much cheaper for me, by far to take the train (although we took 3rd class, but it's not that big a deal standing for 5 hours)... but you could get seriously ripped off on the poipet side, but if you arrive early enough, it's no problem.

Buy lots of water! So in case you get stuck in the queue for 5 hours you won't die. And I personally liked the cab which brought me to Phnom Penh, but if you really want budget, there's the pickup trucks. Looks fun.

If you need rather more detailed info, drop me a mail at butzbe@gmail.com