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Published: December 4th 2009
our speedy minibus....
Sorry its been a few days since my last blog, been quite busy and just not had the time to sit down and write it, so when I left you last time we were to heading to Siem Reap the following day.
It was an early start today, got up in plenty of time as didn't want to be late for out bus, we had booked the VIP mini van as was told it would take only 5 hours as opposed to 7 on the local bus and for $2 dollars extra that was worth it, The bus turned up exactly ontime and we were pleasantly surprised to see how new the bus was. Before setting off to make the next pick up we were given and bottle of water and what looked like a small sandwich, nice gesture, this we put away for later in the journey. Now I've told you about the drive from the airport and how crazy they are on the roads here and around Phnom Penh itself while picking up it was the same. We drove around PP and picked the rest of the passengers up, and were on our way by
some honey cones in the place we stopped for a drink, please note the black maggots..
7.15. It wasn;t long before we realised that the whole of this journey, (5 hours) was going to be the same as the journey from the airport. I don't think the driver took his finger off the horn for longer than 1 min the whole time as he whipped in and out traffic, beeping every driver in front, every bike on our side and the other the whole time, it really was something else. We also realised why this journey was taking only 5 hours.......I do have to say though, the sights of Cambodian life really did amaze me on this journey, I couldn't look to the front of the mini van, due to fear, so was always looking out the side window, and it was like stepping back in time, we went through a lot of agricultural land where they still use ox and cow to plough the fields, they all ride around on bicycle in the villages, kids walk or cycle to school, little ponies pulling the cart or even cows, so wished I could of taken some photos, did try but at the speed we were going, not a chance of them every coming out clear, and
how green is my valley...
they didn't. We stopped half way through the journey for a coffee and toilet break, not at the spider market like I thought but Stan seems to think that is on the way back, Oh forgot to say, the sandwich that were given wasn't savoury but sweet it was like a bread roll but with a sweet coconut jam inside, very vice and tasty..
Got Siam Reap at the time they said we would and there waiting at the bus station was a tuk tuk driver with our names on a piece of paper, releif....
Got to our Guesthouse, called Siam Riep Room Guesthouse, its run by and english guy called Phil and his wife, really nice guy, and very helpful, happy to say our room here is great only paid $15 for the two of us and that's inc breakfast, can't go wrong, (for those of you in UK thats £10).. Got ourselves settled in and decided to find our way around this place as we are spending 4 days here,
Our main thing is to find somewhere to eat that night, we tend to choose street food places as they are cheap and value for money and you get true local food. Anyway, on walking around we suddenly become very hungry as have only had the sweet coconut thing, at the time that this hit us we were around the bar street area so decide to have a little something to eat in a place called Grand Cafe, we ordered Khmer noodles with chicken, when it came it looked ok, but on tasting I decided it was no different to a Pot Noodle, and am still convinced that is what it was with a few fresh carrots thrown in, not nice and also very expensive for Cambodian standards. Anyway, we pay our bill and leave. Once thing I have noticed here is that the prices are a lot higher, and also, as I said they have a Bar Street area where there is a lot of flash bars and restaurants, very surprising when there is so much poverty around. These sort of places you only find the tourists as it is totally geared for us. We have a walk around the Old Market here, see that they have food stalls and decide to come back that night and eat.
We did head back that way in the evening but come across a food stall area on the way that is not there in the day time, as we go walking by the stall holders come running out with their menu in hand and we see that the prices are cheap only $1 to $1.5 per plate, so we take a seat and enjoy a very nice chicken with basil and chicken with ginger and some rice, we also had 2 beers and all in all is cost what we had paid for 1 plate at the Grand Cafe, and tasted great, now thats more like it, had a bit of a walk around and headed back to hotel for an early night as we have a guide organised for the next two days.
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