The Dangers of Pretending to Know What Your Doing

Trip Start Jan 26, 2010
Trip End Jun 08, 2011

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Flag of Cambodia  ,
Sunday, April 18, 2010

I went to reception and asked for my laundry. Not ready yet. I was on my way to bamboo island, a supposed paradise and according to the internet I had a boat to catch at 10. . I told them so and asked if it would be ready by then. At the word boat they visibly perked up and asked me "Sir, you want boat ticket?"

"No, no. have." I said in bamboo English. I wasn't in the mood to pay their commission, so lied. I've gotten used to doing this. It's a survival mechanism I suppose. Commissions can be high, scams are frequent and deception is rampant. Usually you'll just be overcharged but it's not unusual to find yourself going somewhere you didn't plan and the lucky few get scammed completely. My friends gave a scam artist 800 euros to book all their hotels and tours on their first day in Bangkok.  Plus I get tired and annoyed of people jumping at the slightest opportunity to sell me tours and tickets. So I pretend like I know what I'm doing, sometimes it makes me look like a fool but often it works.

I left, made some calls, ran some errands, had breakfast, retrieved my laundry, showered and packed in record time and was ready at 9:30. I jumped on a moto, burned my self on the tail pipe, the driver whisked me away and dropped me off at the boat launch. I asked for a ticket and found out the boat left an hour ago. if only, in only...

The lesson in this? Trust people? No that's not it. Be honest? A nice thought. In SE Asia, you can't win? Most likely. But it's not really that, it's more not thinking of it as winning, or coming out always on top. In a country where you don't speak the language or fully understand the workings of, you'll find yourself a lot happier if you can accept the cards dealt.
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Grandma on

Tevor I read most of you entries and am fascinated thinking "this is my grandson, this traveler. It is an adventure you will never forget! Please be safe and remember that we love you.

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