Day 70, Pt.2: The Pizza Company
Trip Start May 20, 2008
77Trip End Aug 19, 2008
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...a dining booth in the local branch of "The Pizza Company." Our legs liquidated, our energy sapped, no local $1 Cambodian street vendor dish could refuel stomachs as empty as ours were. The only answer was greasy, pseudo-American style pizza as only a mass franchised chain restaurant could muster one. It was a slightly more upscale version of Pizza Hut, charging identical prices and packed to the brim with (rich) locals. Just like in an American chain family restaurant or any other around the world (I assume), an army of waiters marched out with a candle-lit birthday cake singing "Happy Birthday" in Khmer & English to a random boy in the corner whose birthday it happened to be that night. ...and they kept singing it. And sung some more, and more, until me and Jeff's laughter faded into "when is this going to end?" glares. It eventually did end and despite the droning, did manage to put smiles on our faces.
As for the pizza itself, well, I'm not sure which Asian country launched the "Pizza Company" chain, but whoever it was they thought Americans stuff their crust to a ridiculous proportion with not only cheese, but the longest sausage you've ever seen as well. I passed on the sausage crust, but the rest ("BBQ Chicken Special" aka "Chili-flavored Chicken Teriyaki") provided exactly the grease fix I needed. The random usually-taken-for-granted foods one starts craving here are funny. Jeff spent most of tonight's dinner pining for some real cheese or milk, the milk we ordered wound up being the same milk-flavored sugar water sold everywhere in S. Vietnam. I had my first real fluffy bun of bread in maybe a month tonight; Nepalese only ate flat naan, SE Asians stick to rice. Ditto for greasy Western fast food, our stomachs just can't survive without the odd dose of it here and there.
The night was concluded with the discovery of a set of hammocks on the third floor of our even-better-than-the-one-in-Bangkok hostel. This hostel had everything. The dorm rooms were well cooled, had clean private bathrooms, the ground floor had a swimming pool... ahh it was paradise. Anyways, yesh we had a nice "beer + hammocks" hangout, chatted some more about life, and hit the sack. We didn't hit the sack before meeting some of our fellow dormmates though, including a fervently anti-American German named - forgot his name, but he was quite the silly man with a very specifically funny type of German accent that we can't stop impersonating. Sample exchanges:
- "I vas in US, I spent week in LA."
- "Ah, how'd you like it?"
- "Eh, it vas LA. It is neither good nor bad, it is
just LA. Vat is there to say." (shoulder shrug + German style grimace)
- "You've been to Cuba? How was it?"
- "Eh, it vas Cuba." (shrug)
- "How was China?"
- "Eh, it vas China." (shrug)
- "What's it like to live in Hamburg?"
- "Eh, it iz Hamburg. Vat is there to say..."
And so ended our first full day in Cambodia. By this point, having biked around a good chunk of the surprisingly green town center, and having been blown away by the temples, I was thoroughly charmed. etc etc Internet bill running high, adios for now.
Food Poisonings = ZERO
Malaria Vaccine Deployed = 50%
Green Tea Milkshakes = 3