Finally

Following on from my previous blog, I had to leave the village within a short time and I wasn’t given enough notice.  So I decided to pack 2/3 of my belongings with me just in case I wanted to go back home but I chose Siem Reap in the end.

This is my second time to Siem Reap.  The first time was in 2008 to visit Angkor Wat.  No, I don’t plan to go there again this time.  I don’t think there will be any changes to it. I’d be surprised if there are.  So, what have I been doing?  Hm… just pampering myself – eating, eating and eating every day as if I had not eaten for more than 10 years. Well, kind of. Considering the fact that I had been eating one chicken drumstick and plenty of rice for dinner for the past few months (just exaggerating. It didn’t happen every day, er… but that’s usually what’s on the dining table in the village), I decided to ‘liberate’ myself.  LOL!! 

First of all, for accommodation, I chose a ‘hotel’ where I could have in-house massage. So I chose the one I am staying now and booked it for 2 nights.  It turned out the photo editing skills of Cambodians are extremely good.  I didn’t read the reviews on tripadvisor which was a mistake.  The travellers mentioned about mosquitoes in the rooms… yes, I am looking at them now. The walls of the room have dead bodies of mosquitoes and some are flying right in front of me as I write this blog. I extended for one more night anyway because I really like their sumptuous breakfast. It doesn’t taste especially good but there is A LOT of food!!!

(If you want to read about the room, please continue. If not, you can skip these two paragraphs.) The room is big but the TV doesn’t work, there is no telephone inside the room so every time when I want to request for something, I have to walk down the stairs to the reception. There is no elevator in this ‘hotel’.  It says it provides toiletries in the room in the booking confirmation but I only get hand soap, bathing gel, shampoo and conditioner.  Where are the toothpaste and toothbrush?  Upon request.  Where is the shower cap?  None, even after ‘upon request’. The booking confirmation also confirmed a basket of complimentary fruit.  ‘Where was it?’ I asked.  The front desk replied, ‘we have run out of fruit so there is none. Sorry about that.’  He was very courteous so that was fine but I expected to see it the next day.   And the next day?  Housekeeping people came without the fruit.  So I asked at the front desk again.  This time, a more experienced staff answered me, ‘we actually don’t give out the fruit anymore but since it’s written in the booking confirmation, we will give that to you.’  After a while, a staff finally brought the fruit to my room. They probably wondered why this guest kept bugging them about the fruit. It doesn’t cost much at all.  LOL!

Complimentary in-room fruit in my room in Cambodia
Complimentary in-room fruit after several ‘upon requests’

A few positive things about this ‘hotel’ are the staff are very courteous and the room is well-lit (compared to my room in the village).  But the switches of the lights are behind the headboard.  Seriously?  I had to ask the front desk and they sent a staff to show me where the switches were. Oh, by the way, I booked a double bedroom with one large bed but I was given a room with two single beds putting very closely together. Anyway, I am glad my eyes don’t need to work hard on seeing things at night. I can’t work at night in the village cos the room is too dark. I was thinking of going to Thailand to check out their IKEA to buy a desk lamp but too bad, I have to go back to the village on 1 October (yes, there is a confirmed date, finally) and there isn’t any cheap flight flying during that time. Look, taking a bus from Siem Reap to Bangkok takes 13 hours. I am too old for this kind of bus trip. 6 years ago, I took a 22-hour bus ride in Argentina and numerous 7+ hour bus rides in South America. I was even sitting close to the toilet on the bus. I had enough of it, honestly.  So just wait, I will have the chance to go to Thailand.  No hurry.

So, what have I been eating? Check them out. 🙂

Cambodian street food served in a local restaurant
Cambodian street food served in a local restaurant. The owner’s 8 or 9 year-old daughter has an American accent. (I later learnt that this dish is originally from Battambang, Cambodia.)
Cambodian grilled egg.
Grilled egg. Delicious.
Fresh fruit yoghurt at breakfast
Fresh fruit yoghurt at breakfast
Free snack offered by the hotel as a compensation for missing me at the bus terminus.
They promised to come to pick me up at the bus terminus but they didn’t see me and I didn’t see the driver. The bus was late for an hour; the driver went back to the hotel and didn’t wait for me. As a compensation, the ‘hotel’ offered me this free snack – fried chicken with Cambodian peanut sauce.

4 thoughts on “Finally

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