A Cambodian BBQ for two

Trip Start Feb 26, 2010
Trip End Feb 26, 2011

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Thursday, July 8, 2010

It was all the chefs fault. We were very, very hungover.  We finally made it out of bed at 10am and drank two carafes of strong coffee as we ruminated over whether we could stomach S21 and The Killing Fields today.  In the end we decided not and went back to bed for a while.  Feeling a lot better we decided to go to Wat Phnom, Phnom Penh's most important temple.  The temple itself is on the top of a small hill (on a roundabout), the highest point in Phnom Penh, yet the whole area was teeming with both locals and tourists, some posing for photographs and others selling beautiful flowers and chilli crickets amongst other things.  We had a look around and got a bit perturbed by a rather menacing looking elephant that had been apparently left to its own devices by its owner and was roaming around on its own, so we decided to move on.

As we explored the city we became aware that there were so many more cars here (especially 4x4’s) than any other SE Asian city we have been to, besides maybe Bangkok.  You’re more likely to get run over by a car here than a scooter, the roads though are still just as treacherous as anywhere else.  We found ourselves wandering down to the river again and watched some fishermen reeling in their lines for a while and then got a sizeable dinner (making up for last night) of a huge selection of barbequed meats with salad at a tiny restaurant, it was delicious. However, we did pay for it, at 4 dollars each I think it’s the most expensive meal we have had in a good while.

We took a detour on our way back to the hostel, yes an early night for us tonight, through the busy food market which we had passed when we arrived.  Wandering around a food market is one of our favourite things to do when we’re in a different country, it is just so fascinating to see the vast array of different produce on display and all the unusual smells (some which I find hard to stomach, breathe through the mouth Erica, breathe through the mouth). We watched as live fish were gutted on the pavement and chickens complete with head were spit roasted.  Andrew also claims he saw sparrows on one skewer but I can’t verify that, but I wouldn’t be surprised.  Also there were lots of slabs of meat baking in the sun which made for quite a pungent aroma around some stalls, nice.

We managed to leave the market without buying any snacks for the walk home, no sparrows tonight thank you and watched a few episodes of Entourage on the lap top in our room before we fell asleep.  I think it’s going to take all the strength we can muster to get through tomorrow, a very emotional but very necessary part of a trip to Cambodia.
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