One month ago we were sitting in a cinema in Melbourne watching ‘This is the End’…and sadly, it’s finally arrived.
Our journey from the 4 Rivers Lodge reception tent back to Phnom Penh was again via private taxi. Taking about 5 hours, we did have one minor mishap along the way! An hour or so into the journey and our driver decided to taken one section of mud just a little bit too fast, misjudging a couple of quite solid potholes in the road and resulting in a flat tyre.
Of course, that’s when it started to rain. Despite the photos suggesting a cruel desire to obtain evidence of our driver at his absolute lowest ebb, we did offer to help, with the offer kindly refused in broken, yet firm English. So instead we took the opportunity to step out of the harsh airconditioned confines of the vehicle and stretch our legs in the humidity while he calmly walked to the other side of the road, casually took a piss, and then went to work on the tyre. Some of the locals thought it was all most amusing, introducing a rather comedic aspect to what was, up until then, just another normal day!
Arriving in Phnom Penh in the late afternoon, we were absolutely starving. A packet of sugared taro chips purchased at one of the petrol stations hadn’t done much at all to assuage our hunger!
After parking our gear in our room at the hotel Villa Borann, we went for a walk and grabbed a small meal from Blue Dolphin (highly recommended on Trip Advisor, and didn’t let us down), before stopping off at one of the few western supermarkets in town to stock up on chocolate cookies in readiness for our flight back to Australia!
While we strongly debated going back to The Lost Room (given that we had such a special experience there a few weeks prior), we decided that we really should try something new while we had the opportunity. So dinner that evening was at a little restaurant called La P’tite France, and as the name suggests, they specialised in French cuisine.
For me it was time to try something I had always wondered about, but never experienced…bone marrow! A little bit large for an entrée, it was still quite special. It’s also not what you would normally associate with hot and steamy Phnom Penh, but I can see this being a fabulous meal on a crisp, cold winters night in Tasmania! Not sure that I’ve ever seen it on the menu anywhere though…
The steak was also well recommended so we also gave that a try and weren’t disappointed.
All in all, a fantastic dinner to end our time in Cambodia!
A few wines later and we found ourselves transported to the Champs Élysées, with the sounds of Art vs Science in our ears…
In our inebriated state, while wandering the streets of Phnom Penh we also found this rather amusing…
The start to our last day on Phnom Penh was very average, starting with a lack of sleep due to the thin mattress that seemed to accentuate every individual spring underneath, and finishing with an absolutely rubbish breakfast (I’m sorry, but just because it has a picture of an orange on the front does not mean ‘cordial’ tastes anything like ‘juice’).
We then made the most of the little time we had by walking up to the centre of town to pick up some souvenirs. Unfortunately the Artisans d’Angkor shop that was so well stocked in Siem Reap, was very lacking in Phnom Penh. We had our eye on a couple of pieces and didn’t want to be carrying them around for the whole trip, so we just assumed they would have them in PP…unfortunately not!
After a quick stop at our favourite patisserie on the way back to the hotel we found ourselves talking politics again with our taxi driver as we made our way to the airport. They’ve been through some tough times, so it’s great to see so many Cambodians actively engaged in their local and national politics. It’s such a shame that western governments seems to have moved on to shinier toys…
The flight back to Australia was again incredible. I swear we’ll never go back to economy ever again, no matter how many years it adds to the mortgage 🙂 !
And that, my friends, is the end of our Cambodian odyssey!
So what’s next for these Two Clowns?
Stay tuned 🙂