Aug 23, 1996
I've been to cities that have fallen down
From Petra to Baalbek, to old Pompeii town
But no matter how far, or how far I've been
Angkor is the best that I've seen
I handed my passport in, went to Ayuthaya for a couple of days, which is the old capital of Thailand with loads of destroyed Wats, and when I came back, my passport was now holding a visa to Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos. Decided to take the easy way out and jumped in a mini-bus which took us to the border of Thailand and Cambodia. Here, at Poipet, the local Cambodians were protesting about the Thais coming over to gamble, they let us in though. It's was really different here. We lined up, the guy in front, his passport picture showed him with a moustache, the guards thought he was a spy, they dragged him into a room, asked him if he knew Tony Blair !!!! He said yes, so they let him in !!!!! My passport, only showed me leaving Australia in 1996. Taken into the room to explain myself, I couldn't speak Cambodian, they couldn't speak Aussie, so they let me in, and then we were off. We jumped into the back of a ute to get us to Seam Reap. Some say, that this is the worst road in SEA, this was the worst road I had seen. We were disappearing in potholes !!!!! And then coming out the otherside. Eventually, we stopped. A truck had fallen through a bridge. Everyone helped and the truck got out and the bridge was fixed. A storm came, we got soaked, there was a stick in the road, this was a tollbooth !!!!! We got a flat, another ute went past. It became dark, and still we drove. We caught the ute, when it had stopped. It was stopped because there was a traffic jam. Nobody was going anywhere. Our driver told us to get out and walk 800 metres to the otherside. The people in the other ute asked us what was happening, so I told them it was only 30 Klm's into town and we were walking !!!!! We walked, and it was a big mud pit. We were slipping and sliding and eventually, we came out on the otherside. There was a ute waiting for us. We washed in the paddy fields. Jumped in and drove away, just as the other people were exiting. They missed the ride !!!!! The ute drove and dropped us off at the Green Park hotel. It was somewhere between Piccadilly and Hyde Park Corner !!!!! First things to do when getting a hotel room. 1) Can I see the room, 2) Can I have a beer, and 3) Can I have some ganja. Once all 3 are negotiated, you party, have a couple of hours sleep, and then hit the Wats. I had met 2 English brothers, they hired some guides and went on the back of their bikes, whilst I had my own bike. We went through these huge gates, and then there it was Angkor Wat. We did not enter this on the first day, we just went from Wat to Wat. Seeing the trees holding these Wats together. 500 years ago, they would have relied on the Wats for moisture to keep them alive, now they are returning the favour, keeping the Wats alive. Well, we went to see the sun come up at Angkor, it wasn't the most impressive, but climbing the Wat was awesome. It was amazing to be up at the top of the Wat, looking at the carvings and seeing the views. Looking down at what we climbed, its unbelievable how steep it is was. All the Wats were like this. If an invading army tried to climb, they were simply pushed away. Now I could sit here and say what was good and what was bad, but I would be going on for hours, so even though Angkor was great, Banteay Samre was my favourite.