Part 3: Siem Reap and the Angkor Empire

Day Three: Bicycle Ride

I remember these Asian images from my childhood
The sea monsters impressed me when I was very young
Some people fall from the path into a sea of troubles
In this image a woman is rescued by a man on the ship
A soul is rescued by a monk in the bow
Stay safe, stay on the path, do honest good, and make merit

Above and below, this is the main temple in Siem Reap

I went to the Sky View restaurant where I took some of the pictures
earlier. My desire was a Salade Nicoise, something I loved from France
I'd hate to think that this was the cause of my illness; washing
vegetables in the local water is probably hazardous

My original plan was to cycle around the temples on the first day, but then I met Mako and decided to split the cost of a 'Tuk Tuk' tour with her.
I did this two days in a row and decided I'd cycle on the third day.
There's a bit of heart rending here as I sense that she would like to have shared a third day's journey with me and so I was disappointing her.
I am very good at treating people well.

I'm still headstrong, born in the year of the Horse, and I can dismiss anothers' sensitivity... I'm in between the Canadian ideal of rational independence, and Asian sensitivity.
So I apologise as on this third day I suppressed my natural (hospitality) care for another and I went my own way.
Later I sensed Mako's disappointment and I am sorry. I still have a long way to go to repair my heart.

Posh new government buildings

Khmer Buddha images at Preah Prohm Rath

Last day's travels and return to Bangkok

Roluos Group

The market on Road No 6

My ticket was good for three days and I had not used it during my bicycle ride as this was a journey to see the local area and learn something of the livestyle of the locals.
I had time to go and see the Roluos Group, and so I did this alone as Mako had already been here the day before.
Enroute we were looking for the Microlight airfield but I did not see any signs even though a map showed it next to this road.

Opposite Preah Ko you can see models of the temples

My final temple visit was to Lolei which is not pictured here. It was a ruin with a lot of scaffolding surrounding it.
There was 'wedding' music playing loudly as I wandered around.
There's a small monastry with young monks eager to show you their library and to practice their English. I made a donation.

War Museum

We returned to the guesthouse where I picked up my bags and then we were on our way to the airport with a quick visit to the war museum ($5 with a free guide).
Most of the tanks and guns were Russian, some were American. There was one fighter jet which I think was built by Shenyang in China, I'll check this... Looks like it has two Nene jet engines. I cast my inspector's eyes all over it, and the construction standard was very high, well up to 'Western' standards, a good quality product.

My ticket had its final hole punched. These are punched on the date
You have five days to complete your three day trips.
Tickets can not be purchased here and I saw a couple turned away

Click for larger image

Bakong Temple is a beautiful place, it's a place I could spend a lot of time

A Cambodian Tragedy

Much of what is displayed concerns the Khmer Rouge which had
an unimaginable brutality towards the people of Cambodia
I feel very sad when I see unnecessary cruelty,
peace and humanity are so much better


The flight back and a horrible experience

I checked one bag, went through security in my socks, and then went to the Bangkok Air Boutique waiting room. Our flight was delayed another hour...
As soon as the wheels left the ground I knew I was in trouble as my gut began to percolate.
On arrival at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi I hoped the aeroplane would go to a gate, but no, we parked on the apron, and waited for the buses.
I hoped I'd get the first bus, I got the second. The drive was long, and trouble was brewing. I dashed into the terminal and ran for the nearest toilet.
Forty minutes later I went through Immigration, my visa renewed for another two months, picked up my bag, and went to the Domestic end of the terminal.

I had had trouble booking my flight back to Chiang Mai on Friday night. Fate prevented this through three tries on the internet, and fate was being kind to me.
I went up an escalator to the Bangkok Air ticket office, got to the door, but it wasn't to be. I ran down the escalator and straight into the toilet. I was in there an hour or so.
My condition was getting worse, and I knew it was going to be bad... I went to descend the escalators, I know where the ambulances are, but saw the clinic one floor down, went in and was sick three times.
A doctor gave me two shots and three prescriptions. The nurse recommended I go to hospital... They charged me 2,090 Baht for drugs and doctor services.
I have not been able to take these prescriptions as they state to take "after meals"!

Fortunately I called Maneeda who came to pick me up... I was wheeled to her car, and she deposited me in a hotel. I survived the night. It cost me another 1,050 Baht.
Thai Airways publish their final price on the website and there's no extra charges added when you go to the payment page. You can not book a flight on the same day, but they honour the price at the ticket office. I flew back to Chiang Mai, aisle seat, 1,900 Baht. The aeroplane pushed back on time, technical problem, back to the gate. The Flight Attendant came around with drinks, I had a cola.
We were 90 minutes late on arrival at Chiang Mai.
I decided to walk away from the airport and get a Sorng Taew rather than queuing with the long line of people waiting for a taxi.

The red Sorng Taew took a long route to drop another off, and then me.
I dropped my wallet when I paid the driver, my mind was on something else, and I needed to be there soon. After I discover I'd lost my wallet.
Fortunately I had taken a picture of the driver/taxi details displayed in the back, and the local police managed to contact the driver who returned my wallet the next day.
As for my food poisoning/dysentery it's still with me now, (Tuesday), but porridge (oatmeal) seems to survive, as does jam sandwiches (no butter). I've lost 3kg so far.
It took ten days to recover.

24th January 2015 I received this card and many presents

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