The rains continue as we depart Thailand for Cambodia
25.08.2011 - 25.08.2011 28 °C
Phuket, Thailand to Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Awaking the next morning to a continuation of the monsoon rain from yesterday it was simply a question of how long our connecting flight to Bangkok would be delayed.
En route to the airport, in a large minivan, flooding of the main roads became our greatest hindrance. At times our taxi was generating large bow waves as we pushed on towards the airport. Girls on scooters tried to coast through the floods without stalling, whilst small cars struggled to cope with the waters depth and the larger cars and trucks flooding them as they drove past. With no sign of the rain abating and great rooster tails of water being sprayed left and right as we raced at great speed to the airport we were just in time to check in for our only slightly delayed flight.
Arriving at Suvarnabhumi airport we did accidently exit the secure area, in search of visa passport photos, only to have to return back through security once again. Yet with the airport efficient as ever it was of no great consequence. We were soon heading to Phnom Penh.
Arriving in Phnom Penh the city appeared to have retained all the vibrancy and color that I remembered from previous visits. With Dwayne needing to return to the States we were now down to four happy travelers.
Compared to those in Bangkok, riding the larger and more comfortable tuk-tuks of Phnom Penh was a pleasure. However, it was amusing to watch Ed and Marin as we drove across multiple lanes of traffic, often riding into oncoming traffic as we headed the wrong way up the wrong side of the street. Yet our tuk-tuk drivers were not suicidal. This is normal for the region. To Trey and I this was just ‘normal’. To Ed and Marin, not quite set to the rhythm of the area, the tuk-tuk rides would take a little getting used to.
With the monsoon once again upon us we soon found refuge in an Irish bar overlooking the Mekong River. As one of the great rivers of the region seeing this mighty flow of water, as the local traffic passed by and the monsoon rains fell recreated a sight that must have been familiar with so many visitors to this fascinating city.
Our chosen Irish bar ‘Paddy Rice’ proved to be an excellent place for local beer and not so local food. A steak and Guinness pie whilst not a patch on those home cooked versions I so look forward to on my return to the UK, was still a welcome surprise after a diet of Thai and Myanmar food over recent weeks. With no sign of the rain abating and the desire for wondering the darkened streets of Phnom Penh lasting only so long we eventually returned to our hotel. With the boys only having this one night in Phnom Penh before we departed to Siem Reap the following day they were determined that we should have an early start to make the most of their brief time in the city. The best laid plans!