May 1, 2013

Riding in Phnom Penh

All of a sudden I thought I must take few days off from my busy teaching schedule at the University and to give myself a treat, a departure from the monotony of daily chores of sending and fetching children from schools, tuition centres and shopping, keeping my other, rather the better, half happy and occupied, and attending to mother's demands and gentle requests, I decided to go on a short trip to a country I did not go nor plan to go.  But because my friend spoken highly of her trip to Phnom Penh and its charming and tantalizing character, I decided to go on a fact finding mission, without even informing her, this is despite she sending her drone of sms to locate my whereabout, I flew to the capital of the Kingdom of Cambodia in the bright afternoon of 7th November 2012 from LCCT KL by Air Asia AK1474 at 3.15 pm and arrived at Phnom Penh International Airport at 4.00 pm Cambodian Time. The flight hour was 1 hour and 50 minutes.

As I was looking down from the ailse of the plane from seat 27B towards the tail end, the entire landscape was greener and refreshing to the eyes and all I could see from few thousand feet above was a sprawling patches of lushy green plots of lands so flat and orderly suggesting of a fertile pot of rice. As we touched down I saw addition to the runway are being made signifying some important arrivals in a not too distant days.

I wanted to enjoy myself as a "non-Muslim", don't give any wild spin to your imagination, by staying in the hotel doing my prayer alone without going to the masjid or attempting to meet fellow brothers in faith in any of the many masjids in the capital. I booked into A1 hotel adjacent to the military headquarter since that being the most secure place represented by many uniformed groups.

9th being the Independance Day I was stuck in the hotel not knowing what to do.I took a tuk tuk and went for a ride

 A1 Hotel 417


To The Airport

Inside Sampath Phal Hotel Room 417

The room is neat and tidy. It had a table arranged with some groceries and tidbits. Among the items I found noodles with pork and some hard drinks. All products are of Cambodia. There was a price list of products. As it can be seen that no durian is allowed. Among the prohibited activities is to
 Inside a Halal Restaurant near A1 Hotel                                   bring is prostitutes.

 This is the only halal restaurant I managed to locate near the A1 hotel. The food are mostly seafood. The Nasi Lemak was not worth the try. Even the spring roll was also tasteless.

With the Tamil Speaking Gurkah Mr. Bahadur

Meeting with a Bahadur in the Indian Napalese Restaurant who is conversant in Tamil and spoke fluently and who had been to Singapore and stayed in Ang Mo Kio. I had my Indian vegetarian food there with some samosas as well. This is near to the Royal Palace.

Riding towards the Airport 


With friendly soldiers
 One thing I found is that my country is very popular. I found a SIS (Singapore International School) a poly clinic bearing the same name. I feel people have positive opinion about Singapore. I shall continue my study tour of Cambodia again after the next break. That will be my day with the Cambodian villagers.

Web Link: Wiki on Phnom Penh


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