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Time to Go East Again Blog 9: Phnom Penh – Cambodia  Good to be back

August 5, 2016

 

13th July 2016

I have flown from Osaka airport to Kuala Lumpur airport and then onto Bangkok.  Then onto Phnom Penh.  I have never in my life been on so many aeroplanes in my life.  I am shattered.  Thank goodness I have a car waiting for me to drive me to Alyson’s apartment.

And there at arrivals there she is-  Liong. My informally adopted Cambodian daughter.  She was my translator last time in Cambodia but she has become a really good friend.  There she is with open arms. It is so nice to be met in a very strange foreign land.

She introduces me to her friend and then travels back with me to the flat. It is late so she stays. Phnom Penh is not the place to be out and about late at night. It is nice to have company on my first night in the Kingdom.  The view from Alyson’s flat is tremendous.

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Sadly Alyson is not here she has broken her leg and is recuperating in Australia but she still has allowed me access to her flat in her absence.  I did not realise how fortuitous that offer was until later in my trip.

 

It is hot 34 degrees. I have gone up a few degrees since Japan.  It is supposed to be the rainy season but they have not seen much rain so far.

The first day I go with Liong while she is collecting data from Health Clinics in Kampong Spue.  It is a hot, bumpy, interesting experience.

This is the front line of health care in Cambodia.  I am impressed by the teaching going on to the men and by the basic but at least some facilities for birth.  I wish I could do more to help this far away from the local hospitals.  Maybe sometime in the future.

 

I need to get used to the traffic and lifestyle again. I am jetlagged and exhausted Liong leaves me to sleep.

The following day I wake up late and we go Visa hunting for her. The beaurocracy in the office is amazing. We wait and we wait and we wait.  Finally we emerge triumphant with her visa for Thailand.  We also go and buy my bus ticket for Kampot.  We celebrate by having a foot massage followed by dinner and a cocktail in Anise.

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This weekend Liong is off to visit her family and I am off to visit Kampot.  She has put me in touch with her friend Heang who will show me the sights. Looking forward to another long journey on dusty, bumpy roads.

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