The raining season has started

There I was. Woke up in Thailand, but around 2PM I was in Cambodia already. At the airport I had to arrange my visa, otherwise they wouldn’t allow me in, and after grabbing my baggage from the belt, it was time to make a plan. Luckily I quickly met some Belgians that were also planning their next move, so we shared a taxi and the driver brought us to some guesthouse that turned out really nice. The rest of the day (not that there was much day left, but still) I chilled at the pool, and recharged myself from the traveling and everything. Since I left home, I didn’t have a single day of doing nothing, each and every day I saw something, went somewhere or did something. And that is quite tiring. So I chilled at the pool, met a Dutch guy, and chilled some more. The next day, I planned to go to Angkor Wat (which is basically the only interesting thing in Siem Reap, except maybe for Pub Street), but when trying to wake up, I was still so tired from everything that I added an emergency full chill-day. Met some more Dutch people, talked Dutch for pretty much the entire day for the first time since I left home, which was really nice for a change, and at night went out with the Dutch crew (and two Brits). image image The next day I was supposed to be up at 4:30 to head to Angkor Wat and see the sunrise. But… We only returned home from Pub Street around 3:30, and after just laying on my bed and playing a game on my phone, I suddenly woke up at 7. Rushed to the reception, told them I was very sorry, but no one seemed to bother. I changed my pick-up time to 8, checked out, and there was no problem whatsoever. I didn’t have to pay more, and the weather was shit anyways, so the sunrise wouldn’t have been too amazing, so I basically didn’t miss anything by sleeping through 5 alarms. Spent the entire morning and a good bit of the afternoon looking at Angkor Wat (which is only one of the many temples in that area) and a whole lot of other temples. After I was fed up with all the temples, I had my Tuk Tuk driver take me back home, where I had to order some food, because I hadn’t had breakfast or anything. image image I noticed the crocodile burgers were on sale, so I went ahead and tried one. And boy was I glad I did try it. It’s a little scary at first, because I had no clue what a crocodile would taste like, but it was absolutely delicious. It might be because of the amount of rice and noodles I’ve been eating, and my tastebuds wanting something else, but it felt like one of the best burgers I had ever had. Back home I’ll try to call McDonald’s, and pitch the idee of a McCrocodile (McRocodile?). Met up with the Dutch crew as well, and played a couple of games of cards. That night, we planned to go to the night market, but we kept on talking in the restaurant we were in. I had to catch my bus to Phnom Penh that night, so I didn’t get to see the night market. While heading to the bus, I got scammed by my favorite app for this entire trip: I got sent completely the wrong way, and ended up having to pay a moto-taxi to rush me to the correct place, because otherwise I would’ve missed my bus.. When I got to the bus terminal, I found out the night bus had actual beds, which was nice. But, the beds were designed for Asians, not for tall Dutch people. So I kinda had to cut off my legs in order to fit in. Which wasn’t nice. After 6-ish hours, we arrived in Phnom Penh. Everything was sore. The bed felt (just like almost every other bed in Asia) like it was made of stone, and because I had to curl up the entire night, my knees were killing me. image Then I was in Phnom Penh. The Dutch crew from Siem Reap recommended that I stayed in a hostel called Base Villa, so I made my way there. I slept pretty much the entire time on the bus, so I didn’t really see the Phnom Penh traffic (the bus terminal was really close to my hostel), and I decided to rent a Moto. Baaaad decision. The Phnom Penh traffic is horrible. People walking across the road without looking, people driving on the wrong side of the road, overtaking each other. Cars suddenly making u-turns and ending up perpendicular to the road. Luckily, I somehow survived the entire Moto ride, and ended up at my first stop: Choeung Ek. Wow. That was impressive. I can’t recall ever hearing anything about the Khmer Rouge back home. But now suddenly it was just me, my audioguide and the killing fields. Ridiculous stories of how Red Khmer people managed to kill about 3 million Cambodians in just a few years. And how they managed that. I honestly had to take a moment for myself when entering, to process everything. It was overwhelming. Everything from the stupa (the memorial) containing 5000 skulls that were found in that area to signs saying “please don’t step on the bones” (meaning there are still bones in the ground that weren’t picked up yet by the preservation crew) and from a story about blasting music so no one would hear the screams and the moans of the people getting killed there to a tree that was used to smash kids and even babies against, to kill them. Ridiculous how people can be so insane that they would ever do that to other people. image image image After finishing the tour and taking a breath again, I went to the next impressive Khmer Rouge point: the S-21 Tuol Sleng Khmer Rouge prison. This was the prison that was used to torture people, forcing them to give out false statements. And as soon as they gave out those statements and signed them, they were brought to Choeung Ek to be murdered. Again extremely impressive. Quotes coming out of my audioguide like “the policy was that it’s better to kill an innocent person, than to let an enemy run free.” And hundreds, or maybe even thousands of pictures of the prisoners that were staring right into your soul. And a part of me knew that I might have ‘met’ some of the people in the pictures in the memorial in Choeung Ek. Wow. image After that, I went back to the hostel, parked my Moto there (I had enough near-death-experiences in the traffic for the day), and walked to the royal palace. It was nice to see, but I think it was not quite as impressive as the palace in Bangkok. image After all these trips, it had been more than enough for the day. Back at the hostel, I talked with some random people, and one guy in particular. An somewhat older guy from Scotland that called himself ‘papa Charlie.’ He really loved talking, and I quite like listening, so that worked out alright. The next day, I went and saw Wat Phnom, just another temple, in the center of a roundabout. image Back in the hostel I started chatting with a German and a Brit. That night I had arranged to meet up with Davy, the Cambodian girl I met in Bangkok. I was going to have dinner with her and two of her friends that studied Electrical Engineering in Phnom Penh. When I told that I was going to get picked up by a Cambodian later that day, the German girl asked me “she’s not called Davy, is she?” And then we found out we both met Davy somewhere on our trip. She met Davy in Laos, while I did in Thailand. Ridiculous to discover weird stuff like this. What’s the chance you meet the same person, weeks apart in completely different countries, and then meet each other in yet another country. That night, after getting picked up by Davy we went and ate in a Khmer restaurant, some proper local food. And I talked with Davy’s friends about Electrical Engineering all night (sorry Davy!). image Later that night, I did an elaborate lap around Phnom Penh with Davy on the Moto. Seeing some new parts of Phnom Penh, and again constantly having near-death-experiences on the bike. When I got dropped off at the hostel, it was quiet, so I just went to bed. The next morning, I left Phnom Penh for Kampot. When I arrived there I strolled through the city for a bit, but it didn’t look like there was too much to do there. My main reason for going to Kampot was to visit the National Park that was nearby. But I arrived in the hostel too late to still rent a bike and go for it, so I joined a huge group of Brits and played some card games with them. image image The next day it was finally time to go to the National Park. I met a couple of people the day before that were willing to join me, so I was excited. I rented my bike, got some breakfast, but halfway through my breakfast, it started raining. And it hasn’t stopped raining since. After waiting for a few hours, checking the weather forecast every 5 minutes, and not seeing any change, I returned the motorbike. Didn’t look like I was going to the national park after all. Now it’s time to get my raincoat from my backpack and just explore Kampot city for a bit, otherwise I will leave Kampot without doing anything, and that would be a pity. image

3 Replies to “The raining season has started”

  1. Oma Reiny says: Reply

    Een mooi verslag. Indrukwekkend! Mooi, zoals je verteld over de ‘Killing Fields’, en de emoties die daarbij naar boven komen. Het verbaasd me steeds weer dat er zoveel jonge mensen op pad zijn in dat deel van Azië en hoe vlot de contacten gelegd worden. Inmiddels hoop ik dat het droog is en je je reis, zoals gepland, kunt vervolgen. Tot de volgende update!!

  2. films year 2020

    films year 2020

  3. how about the next agenda? how about the next trip?

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