Sun, Sea, Sand and Tuk Tuks

Here are some recent updates since leaving Vietnam. I haven’t had access to a computer for a while so I’ve been avoiding the updates but as I have one here now let’s go – writing from Phnom Penh.

Eloise and I departed Ho Chi Minh city after meeting with some awesome people. It was the first time in a long time that we would have to be on our own and leave our settled group, something we both were prepared to do but weren’t all that happy about it. Despite this, we left a waving Sasha and Aiden goodbye as we drove off into the night on a very hot, stuffy journey. Probably the worst night bus we’ve had actually, I was cramped in a very small place on a double bed with Eloise and no air-con. Thankfully we travel in a two, who knows who I would have ended up cuddling for the travel. However, you just have to manage when you’re traveling so we both challenged ourselves to duck down and sleep off a few hours of the journey – we ended up at the Cambodian boarder around 5.00am and sorted our visas very easily, something we both just wanted done as quick and with as little stress as possible.

After having such a fun, hectic and crazy few weeks in Vietnam we were both longing for the quiet sands of the coast. With that, we both almost ran to Otres Beach in Sihanoukville (south coast of Cambodia). We got there earlier than expected and were greeted by a gorgeous and heartwarming sunset on the beach. The sea sparkled as light reflected off of its skin and the sand felt like a home comfort in between my toes. With a huge smile, I dropped my bag in the bamboo dorm and read a book for about three hours while the sea stroked the shore…

We ended up staying for three nights until we jetted off in a tiny minibus to Kampot. I loved Kampot, it was a very small and pretty town, despite not much really ‘happening’ it was so nice to relax – this is when I realised Cambodia is all about relaxation. The Khmer people really are beautiful, they are all so loving and all hold such a kind nature. It was a brilliant break from mad Vietnamese people. Our hostel was made of treehouses, bamboo bungalows and huts by the river. I saw the biggest beetle I’ve ever seen in my life there…along with a funky blue lizard and some funny frogs. Anyway, we stayed there a night when Eloise said that Sasha was arriving in Kampot the following day, which led to an unexpected reunion of forces. The two guys that were traveling with Sasha also joined us (Jan and David) who are both super lads and good fun to be with and to be honest David is the most amazing guy i ever met or maby traveled with i realy have to admire he ist a genuis and eloise favorit and i want a baby from jan:P. I have not met anyone who didn’t fell in love with David at first sight. (this post has been defiled by a crazy Austrian man, David.) . After returning home from a day of cycling, another joined us. Aiden arrived at the hostel and we all ran to him with big smiles and hugs, it was like seeing an old friend again – I admittedly missed his sarcasm. All we needed was Caio back from Wales and it would be like Vietnam all over again..
After a few chilled nights and one hectic one which led to watching a sunrise – we said our goodbyes to Kampot and left to go back to Otres Beach which was great as Eloise and I both wanted to go back there already.

I think we all stayed in Otres for about 5 days? We also were joined by our lovely aus friend Dom who is an absolute angel. We stormed the beach with volleyballs, sunburn and lying down all day, it was so beautiful..
We also ended up at one of the last jungle raves which was a full night of dancing, drinking and running around until 6.00am. Another sunrise to add to the journey…

Today we are in the capital ‘Pearl of Asia’. I can’t say that I love the city as it’s very cluttered with rubbish and construction sites, however we’ve had a very interesting day visiting the tourist sites of Phnom Penh. The genocide museum and Killing Fields really struck a heart string for me – the Khmer people and Cambodia itself went through so much under the rule of the Khmer Rouge. Seeing bones and clothes of real people lying in the fields really shows the true atrocities of war and killing, it was so surreal and really disturbing; something that has to be seen with your own eyes to really empathize with these people. I donated some money and lit an incense stick and prayed for the victims, for peace and for my own family and friends. Nobody deserves to be put in situations like that, even in the genocide museum some of the rooms really made me shiver, real people were tortured in those rooms only forty odd years ago – horrifying. Yet it was very interesting and enlightening to learn more about a country and the culture it holds.

That’s mainly the updates for now, currently waiting for the night bus to Siem Reap. I am so excited to see Angkor Wat and all of the old temples, one of my top to do’s in Asia is Angkor and it’s happening in the next few days! I am also with some incredible people who make me feel so privileged to be in such an interesting place with them. Home is creeping up, something like nine days now until I’m back in the UK, crazy times indeed.
I’ve just learnt so much and I love it all – can’t wait for a cuddle with my dogs though. Also a pasty and a pint of ale….or seven.

Peace

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