Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Relaxing at the beach

On the way to Kampot from Phnom Penh, the bus stopped at Kep.  Riverside or beach?  So we jumped off early and soon found ourselves enjoying a fruitshake in an infinity pool overlooking the sea and nearby islands.  It can't get much better than this....or can it?

After a yummy meal of fresh crab and beer with our new friends from Ipswich Kim and Paul, the next morning we were off to Rabbit Island.  After a 30 minute boat ride, we were greeted with a clean, sandy beach, warm, clear water and the best part, very few tourists.  We ended up spending the whole day in the water chatting with our boat mates David and Sanya, an American and Czech living in Okinawa.  We hit it off so well that we were sad to have to say good bye to them at the end of the day, but we hoped to meet up with them again in Kampot.

In the evening, we shared an aperitif of rice vodka with our other boat mate Bartek from Poland.  As we did our cheers, a table of locals followed suit and then invited us to join them.  The custom: a shot of vodka followed by a spoonful of a tender fish in a very tasty sauce.  But what's this?  A big rib bone.  It's not fish we are eating, but snake!  And a rather big one at that.  The bone was a good 5 cm long.  One pitcher done.  2 of the locals went to bed.  After the second pitcher, Thomas and Yumi stumbled to bed.  We passed out at 9pm, which was perfect because that's when the generators are turned off and there is no more electricity for the night.

We only planned to stay one night, but soon after checking out of our bungalow, we decided to stay another night so checked right back in.  We spent the day swimming, reading (Thomas has read more in 3 days than he has in the last 3 years!), playing volleyball, sleeping, drinking shakes and repeat.  We realised this was the first time in 5 months that we were just chilling on a beach.  It was a great way to re-charge our batteries.  We didn't sleep very well at night due to a lack of through air in the bungalow (very basic: bed, mosquito net, squat toilet and shower head), but we caught up on our zzzz's during the day.  A big thunder storm brought a much needed breeze through the bungalow in the middle of the second night.

We didn't want to leave the island and are wish almost came true.  We had booked the trip with a tuk tuk driver Rath and he said to give him a ring whenever we wanted to leave.  We are then sent on a 45 minute wild goose chase to find "our" boat.  We tried approaching a couple of boats, but they wouldn't let us board without tickets (Rath said he had them).  Finally, we were advised to ask a French group if we could join their privately rented boat.  They kindly agreed.  We learned that they are a group of audiologists and ENTs who donate 2 weeks of their time every 6 months to do hearing tests and hearing aid fittings for children in Cambodia.  Upon arrival at Kep, we found ourselves stranded again because of course Rath was no where to be found.  The doctors had 2 extra spaces in their mini van and were staying just across the road from us so offered us a ride.  We met them later for a lovely seafood dinner at the Crab Market.  It all worked out in the end and actually for the better.

No comments:

Post a Comment