Published: August 5th 2008August 5th 2008
We made it outta Cambodia, just in time. I had definitely seen all that there was to see and was ready get on my horse. We started in Siem Reap and visited the Ankor temples for a couple of days. We somehow managed to find a pimp hotel and drove around in a taxi, so we didn't really get a real idea of what was really going on around us. We decided to have a little adventure and booked bus tickets to Phnom Pheng. Now our 4.5 hr journey turned into 6 on our "air-conditioned" ha! bus. Now we weren't kindapped or extorted or anything like what we heard from others, but my ankles were phenomenally swollen after not being able to move for that long. We made it to stinky, dirty Phnom Phen and found a pretty good spot to stay. It turned out to be a japanese hotel, so we had some sushi to get us through the day. We first decided that we were not interested in doing that little trip again, so we changed our plane tickets to leave from PP instead of Siem Reap, which was the best choice we're made all trip.
We then got out tuk tuk and hit the Genocide museum. It was a high school prior to being turned into a disgusting prison, that sent 17000 people to the killing fields. The Khymer Rouge had even photographed and taken autobiographies of everyone that went through, which were on display. Some of the info said that there were between 2-3 million people killed, and this was only 29 years ago. After an hour I had enough and had to sit down and get some fresh air. We then visited the killing fields, which the Cambodians balk at, because their goverment has sold the rights of the area to the Japenese who charge entry into this giant gravesite. We walked around and saw the giant tower that has all of the skulls that they have dug up, and around 30 mass graves found so far. There are still 20 or so that they haven't touched at the site. What I found hard to believe is that they could fit that many bodies into holes the size of small ponds. I quickly had enough of that, but Den said that it was all part of the experience. We then hit up the market and I got some relief from a knockoff coach handbag and wallet. We had some eats next to a pile of clams and chickens' feet, which made me a little less hungry for some reason....
So now we're in Saigon (Ho chi Minh city) and it is a breath of fresh air (literally) compared to Phnom Phen. There are still crazy motos everywhere, beeping like mad, but it's clean and there are tourist police on every corner and we just had lunch and beer for 3 bucks. Tomorrow we are going to check out the Cu Chi tunnels, where the Vietcong would burrow during the war (turns out that lasted from 1954-1975). I had no idea that it was so long.
I hope that everyone is well.
J and D