Posted by: Googie | February 21, 2010

Phonm Penh and the art of motorcycle maintenance

Disclaimer: This post has nothing to do with motorcycle maintenance. Heck, it doesn’t have anything to do with motorcycles at all. It is just an uncreative, uninspired play on “Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance”.

I was taking a G.S.T. Express Bus to Phnom Penh, and as promised, I was picked up from my guesthouse at 6.30 am. The pick up bus dropped me at the main bus, and after loading my luggage, I went inside to find my place already taken. There was a large Chinese family travelling in the same bus, and my seat was also allocated to them.

The bus guys tried to give me another seat, but I wanted a window seat. After all, I hadn’t come all the way to Cambodia to sit next to the aisle and watch a TV that was playing some Khmer comedy that about 5 people in the entire bus understood. So I sat next to a window seat, and told the bus people that I’m not getting up from here come what may. They didn’t understand a word of English, but I guess they understood what I wanted because nobody disturbed me all the way till Phnom Penh.

Once in Phnom Penh, I made my way to Grand View guesthouse where Talita had said she would be staying. On enquiring at the reception, they said that she had already checked out. So I shot her an email, and then found a cheap room at another guesthouse.

In the restaurant by the lake, I met a Nigerian guy called Ken and we chatted about a whole lot of stuff for a long time. When I got up to leave, he asked me if I had some money for him to take a ride back home, and that made me really uncomfortable. But we’d been talking for a long time, and I found it hard to refuse outright. So I gave him 2000 Riel, but made it clear that I wasn’t pleased.

In the evening, I went to explore around a bit, and met another African dude. This guy said he was from Liberia, and also asked for some change. This time I just walked away. I hate to make general assumptions, but thanks to these two guys, I think I’m going to avoid Africans in Phnom Penh 😦


Colourful fountain on Monivong boulevard

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  1. You paid cash to the first guy huh… awesome !! … the googie legend goes international…..

    “haa kya…. pur kaise ?!!!…. hmmmmmm….. “.
    The phrase has nothing to do with your “generosity” 😀

  2. ha ha… generosity my ass, I was getting ripped off everywhere; but now I think I’m learning how not to let them take your money!

  3. the gesture of generosity
    goes along with……? 🙂

    I was creating that rhyme many times during my first stay in India…. but no more poetry after that 😉

    I found funny the part where you acting as a small boy who tries everything in order to remain at the window otherwise he would spit on all the people who would speak Chinese… ok.. Googsha.. go ahead… you will win this battle… 🙂

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