Outstanding hats-Cambodia revisited

A final fling through Cambodia saw me landing in Phnom Penh and alas only staying a night before bombing up to Kratie. I wish I’d seen more of PP as it was an enticing place and I had a great night there.

I’d booked into the Arun Mekong Guesthouse, on Koh Trong island, in the middle of the Mekong. A friggin disaster of a place, no food, no water, no internet, no phone signal, no electricity between 10pm and 7am, nothing associated with a friendly welcome and a seriously wierdy boy looking after the place….Psychotic? My feeling of unease not helped by reading a Cambodian Noir death-and-murder-in-the-backwoods book whilst there……Chicken I know but I got seriously weirded out by the guy and as the only guest and being a sensible peace-loving fellow – I fled! Pronto.

A mad, almost midnight, escape-moped to the dark and deserted beach and a one-off boat hop back to the mainland. Overnight in a fleapit and catching the first bus out in the morning, back to Phnom Penh then scampering back to Siem Reap to meet up with my old friend Tiang, as time was running out before flying to India. I debated going up to the highlands but was glad I didn’t, hearing that temperatures over the next few days dropped to nearly freezing up there.

However – a pleasant fisherman and his daughter, met earlier in Koh Trong.

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Siem Reap market, and the nearby floating village -very poor but very lovely people.

Lovely Sophie, who lives rough in and around the market and who is, I’m absolutely sure, an angel.  

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We decided on a road trip west for the remaining days and went up to see his family near Triel. I’d passed along this road the day before and it looked intriguing.

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An area of simply outstanding hats and more lovely Cambodian people…not forgetting Buddhist monasteries, markets and the villages dotted along the way.

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