Thursday, November 5, 2009

Fried Bananas and Fanta.

Favourite things today: Fried Bananas for Breakfast and New Fanta flavours: Lychee and Fruit punch!
Punctures: 0
Kms covered: 290kms

We ended up altering our planned route a bit, and spent last night in Skuon (95km from Pnom Penh). It was a pretty nice little town, with some great food ; ) We are having a great time checking out the local eateries and scoffing Khmer rice/veggies/meat dishes. Always pretty cheap and HUGE portions!

Today was spent cycling to Kampong Thom (~90km from Skuon). It is really HOT in Cambodia (mid-30s by 9am), so it is pretty tough going, and the distances seem a lot further than they might in NZ... We have been drinking around 5 litres a day! The people are always really friendly, and we have enjoyed non-stop "hello"s and waves from every (literally!) child we pass. Even the adults, who are a bit shy, have been smiling at us and saying "hello". It is really nice to have this interraction with the local people along the way. I don't think that most travellers have the same pleasure.

Sorry, no photos yet. We should be in Siam Reap in the next few days and will rectify the situation.

All the best to everyone back in New Zealand (and Australia). We are having a wonderful time, but thinking of you all.

Vanessa and Elisha xox

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Phnom Penh

Yay! We finally made it! No photos up yet, as our guesthoue doesn't have a USB port on their computer. We will have photo goodness up asap though...

We arrived at TAT guesthouse save and only a little worse for wear yesterday evening (thanks for the recommendation Megan - they have been awesome). The majority of the afternoon/evening was spent sleeping our jet lag off.

Today we were awoken at 5am by the guesthouse-family taking their showers (Cambodians are early-rises!). Not to worry - most everything opens at 7am, so we didn't have to waste any time. After breakfast, it was straight off to find a bank - sadly closed on Sundays (a bit odd, since this is definately not a Christian country). Not to worry, though - we were whisked off on a moto to check out Tuol Sleng genocide museum.

The museum was incredibly sad, and still in such a raw state - it really brough home the horrors that the Cambodian people have been through in their recent history, and certainly makes you appeciate how incredibly easy-going and friendly they are. We will have pics up soon.

On a lighter note, afeter the museum, we headed down to the river font to check out the annual river-boating festival. It is an annual even to celebrate the reverse-folw of the Ton le Sap lake, which becomes so swollen from the Mekong over the monsoon season, that it flows back towards the sea for a few weeks each year. It certainly seemed like it was a really big deal - lots of people out along the water-front to cheer on the competitors, who were manning long rowing-style boats (about 20 men/women per boat). It had a really great festival atmosphere, with lots of interesting food on sale (crickets on a stick, bulotte (chicken foetus in a shell) and BBQd (tiny)chicks). Sadly, we didn't have any riel (cambodian currency) so I couldn't buy a BBQd chick... kind of like BBQd pousson, I think. Next time.

Tomorrow, we are off on our bikes to Kampong Cham. It is about 110km aaway, but a good deal of the road is unsealed, so we will see how we go. We are planning an early start to fingers-crossed that we make it!

Thinkng of you all.

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