Monday 19th May – Tuesday 20th May – Sihanoukville

So after a slightly dodgy journey the previous day I decided that the best plan was to do very little and to chill out on the beach.  The beaches in Sihanoukville are beautiful and the sea was really warm.  Partly due to the events of the previous day and partly due to continued warnings I didn’t take any valuables to the beach with me.  This half explains why the only photo that I have from Sihanoukville is of me lying in bed!  That evening I managed to miss dinner at the guesthouse (the restaurant and bar shut at 10) and asked a motorbike rider to take me into town.  The place I wanted to go to was shut as were the next 8 or so places that he took me to.  The town centre was absolutely dead – well I guess it is off season.  Finally we headed to a backpacker’s area of town which was very much alive and I got some food from a Supermarket.


The following day I felt insanely ill.  I think I may not have mentioned the fact that I got really ill towards the end of my stay in Siem Reap.  I won’t elaborate too much on the details but it wasn’t nice and after over a week of not being able to eat and having serious trouble consuming any liquids I was starting to get dehydrated and struggle a bit.  One night when I was up bascially all night I managed to convince myself that I had cholera.  Although this was not entirely my fault.  If you’ve ever used a self-diagnosis site online you’ll know what I mean.  Those things are the easiest way to give yourself a proper illness (like a heart attack) that exist.  I remember using one for a really bad headache at home once and it said that I had a brain tumour and that I should go straight to Hospital.  So, on the basis of my symptoms, general hypochondria and the wonderful tinternet I managed to convince myself that I was going to die in my sleep, alone.


Whilst I lay in my self-pity I read a local paper which I found outside my room.  It was this kind of Worldwide news bulletin and, yes, it was in English – I am yet to master Cambodian!  Anyway so I’m flicking through this paper and there were two stories which really interested me.  The first was about two guys from the U.S. who were being investigated for grave offences.  I mean hole in the ground here and not serious, although I guess the first does not rule out the second.  Basically, they were accused of stealing a skull and then using it as a bong.  Two things struck me about this story.  Firstly, WHAT? And secondly, although this is by no means my specialist subject, would that even work?  The second story which caught my eye was about a bear which had attacked a boy in the Battambang Province of Cambodia.  Apparently there was a group of children as the bear approached.  The majority of them managed to run away and climb trees but one boy was not so lucky.  I thought you were meant to play dead and that bears could climb trees but hey.  The thing that struck me about this story was an interview woith a local man from the village who was quoted as saying the bear had, “lost his way”.  The implication here was not that he had literally taken a wrong turning when, say, searching for the honey tree, but that something had gone awry in his thinking.  It almost read like there should have been a follow up interview with Mama bear saying something like:

“He was such a good cub at primary school.  He went to Sunday school and loved cub scouts.  Then he started secondary school, started mixing with the wrong crowd, experimented with illegal grubs and as the man said, ‘lost his way'”.

Villagers heard the attack and chased the bear off with farming implements if you were wondering.  The boy is in Hospital and his condition was said to be, “unknown”, which instantly made me think that the reporter was a lazy git.

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2 Responses to “Monday 19th May – Tuesday 20th May – Sihanoukville”

  1. I’ve never learned so much from any other blog post. Enjoyed reading this today.

  2. Good job!

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