Sisophon to Battambang 71km
Today I meet a Swiss Accountant, cycling towards Singapore. He left Switzerland eight months ago, cycling through central Asia and China. He is tired and looking forward to a rest, and the end of his 12 month adventure. He agreed with me, however. This piece of road is one of the scariest that we have ridden on. The traffic is not dense, but nor are the drivers particularly intelligent nor caring. Not since the Nullabor have I had so many "blimming heck" moments.
But I know I'm back in the real Asia. Smokey exhausts, smokey rubbish fires, rubbish and trash everywhere, crazy drivers, aggressive horn tooting, dusty, bumpy roads, under aged scooter pilots, 4, 5, and even 6 on a scooter, no helmets, disorganized chaos everywhere. Yes this is Asia. And people live here, and accept all the above as normal.
But the kids are lovely. So many bright cheerful "hellos" and they are always overjoyed if you wave or yell out a greeting in return. And so many of them are on bicycles, of every sort and size. Small wheels, large wheels, orange, yellow or red wheels. Small kids on big bikes. Big Kids on small bikes. And you don't want to be passing a school when the kids are heading home. Pandemonium.
But the kids are certainly not the reason that for the first time on my trip I felt uncomfortable being on the road. Yesterday, riding the almost deserted border roads with military stops was a little eerie, but today was scarey. Hopefully there won't be too much similar.
Cambodia today redeems itself. Today I almost cycled past a pizza shop. Yep, I feasted. AND even better, today I discovered that Cambodia has some French history, and they still bake French baguettes. Oh my goodness gracious me. My favourite....... And the shop I found even sold tiny spreadable cheese segments. It's almost like real food.......
What I can't understand is, everywhere, the price quoted is in dollars. What's that about? Last night the hotel was $15. Tonight's is $5. Pizza was $9.50, baguettes $2.50. But I've almost caught up. $NZ1 is 3000 Cambodia Ringets. See ya can teach old dogs stuff.
I'm booked on to a river boat tomorrow. Fiona and I are cruising to Siem Reap where all the temples, and I presume tourists, are. Still, I'm really close. It's really famous. And it's been many time recommended. I'll let ya'll know.