More from Phonm Penh
Trip Start Jan 13, 2009
70Trip End May 17, 2009
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Where I stayed
Diamond's Guest House
I got a computer!!!! In PP!!!! With lots of help and some great Karma. The nice guy at the guesthouse that was full that I went to with the girl from France suggested a place to buy a computer. I had been going back and forth at home, researching every which way but loose on which one to buy , the ratings, searching other's blogs to see if there was enough wifi to make it worthwhile....you know - my regular due diligence, excessive analytical shopping process. Anyhow, with my SE Asian guru's advice - I decided not to bring one......Janice you have been right about everything else...except, why did you not force me to not buy anything at all before I left. I wish I came with nothing as everything is so cheap here you could outfit yourself for 1/100th of the cost.....oh well....get to Beijing and I am the only kid on the block without one - so uncool
Look at computers in Bangkok - lots of them but even more expensive than in China....wishing for Costco and not happy I am uncool. Siem Reap and getting the blog and picture thing down pat and meet Raquel on the scam bus - she shows me hers and how she downloads her photos every night, does her blog, conducts law business online and is all around in love with the computer and doesn't find it too much of a hassle to schlep around. I am so envious I start making a plan. Contact Henry Hollinger - part time Vietnam resident and inquire if it is viable to have one sent to Saigon. Henry says no - it will be stolen in transit and he starts a search to find someone coming from Calgary to Vietnam who would agree to bring it to me..., Jackie does inquiries with fed ex and purolater and they say, for a price, they will ensure it gets to Saigon. Do cost benefit analysis on the bus form Batt to PP and decide - Hell ya, can't put a price on coolness and convenience and the joy of knowing only your DNA is on the keyboard
Well obviously you can put a price on it and I decide it will be worth it. Decide to contact Jackie and get the wheels in motion to have a little Costco gem shipped to Saigon. Meet the French girl on the bus - she shows me hers and we decide together I need one to - she has a friend in PP working for the French government and we decide to pursue that. Meet GH guy - I go to PP store expecting they will not have real computers and wowser they have the one I want - seems legit, it is on sale and another customer (Cambodian guy who spoke English - very little English here and nearly zip at the store) gave me advice and I bought it. It needed to be formatted with the stuff I wanted on it so I was to return the next day to pick it up. Go to the National Museum to hang around waiting for my computer to be ready and my visa for Laos to be completed and meet a woman from LA and we get talking - she has the exact computer I just bought and she asks me hard questions about what I am getting on it......being the moron I am, I say, duh????? She agrees to come with me to the store for pick up - we pal around all day and really enjoy ourselves. She had been pretty miserable for a while as she caught some GI thing in Thailand and had been feeling poorly for a while - the whole time in Cambodia. Not digging Cambodia - me? loving it as usual. Anyway, she came to the computer superstore with me and asked some really tough questions. This caused a stir.....hard to translate hard questions to girls in matching silk suits who have been hired only because they are pretty and match nicely. Finally, Hop (my new friend) tests out all my new gear, realizes I got a whack of very expensive 'grey market'' programs and a 6 cell battery thrown into the deal, making the price point all the more favorable....and ta da!!! Day 2 with the new thing.
Hop and I paled around the last couple of days - we rented a tuk tuk to take us around and he quit on us cause he had no idea what to show us.....Our Khmer is not so good.....so mostly we hung around taking pictures in the city - taking in the sights including the riverfront, the Russian market, the genocide museum and sipping tea in free wifi cafes as she patiently taught me some basics about using my new toy
Tonight they had a couple of big groups doing public aerobics in one of the Tianammen Square sized park in front of the Royal Palace. Hundreds? of Cambodians, mostly women and a few brave men, led by male instructors, participated in the aerobics class while just as many onlookers watched. Of course I took part - hoping it would be line dancing but nah, it stayed as aerobics. I did pretty well for most of the class considering I was wearing a backpack with my trusty computer on my back, my shoulder bag and it still was around 35 degrees.
After that got into a little verbal sparring with a creepy, very creepy old guy who was picking up a Cambodian child prostitute at the next table to us at dinner.
Ok, don't cringe, yes I do remember not having the use of my arms for a summer and the residual effects of those rather catastrophic injuries.......but......... I had to say something to this pedophile. He told me she told him she was 23....this guy looked liked Hannibal Lechter - drooling at the prospect that some kid approached him in a restaurant
Hope to get my pictures uploaded so I can share them with yŠll
Ciao for now,
Still happy on the road.
Please do not send me advice to shut up - yes I do know better.....I also know I should eat less sugar and more vegetables but I don''t always do that either!!! Sometimes you just have to speak up, the hairy eyeball is not always enough.