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The Itchy and Scratchy Show!

Righty Ho,

Well this is day three in Sihanoukville and so far we have managed to do as little as possible, so hopefully this blog wont be too long and then with all best intentions, we'll try and update you all on New Years Eve and then once we get back to Phnom Penh so a bit of housekeeping, but lets go through how our last couple of days have panned out and how karma has got its vengeance once again after gloating how amazing everything was a couple of days ago.

Turns out there are a lot of mosquitoes here, or sand-flies, or potentially even fire ants out on some vindictive mission to take over the world, or just generally unleash their full five star pain. And now I know that some people use fancy numbers with lots of zeroes on the end in order to emphasize their point (for example I would choose to say that I have over 300 bites on myself currently), but being as pedantic as I am, I know for a fact that as i was rubbing tiger balm into my skin an hour ago, the real total was 314 and I think that sounds far more painful than 300 any day. So, turning back our clock to a couple of days ago (yes time travel will be required for yet another blog) we were off to have coconuts and watch the sunset on the beach with a perfect view.

This all started off fairly well and we found a nice place right down the other end of the beach for dinner only very slightly off put but the fact the woman who was running the restaurant had one of those electric fly torture contraptions that look just like a tennis racquet, and inflict no less pain when you come into high speed contact with it (i would know). Now back home these things would be used to chase a singular fly around the room by some person hell bent on killing this one little guy. Here the story is slightly different, she would simply wave the racquet around the hammock she was lying in and the thing zapped about 56 (note the use of non-zero numbers) times in one swoop with an equal number of insects dropping to the ground. All in all over the hour or so we were there, probably close to 1112 insects perished on that evening, and wouldn't be returning for dinner the next night. Now we weren't phased by this, not one bit as we strolled back to our bungalow in the sand admiring how quiet everything was.

The next morning was rather a different story as it turned out not only were these little critters not affected by the insect repellent (DEET) (and yes I know I've told you all this before but this is a separate occasion from the last blog - so i'm not completely loosing my mind) but they actually seemed to feed off of it which took my total amount of current bites up to the whopping 312 that we were talking about earlier in the piece, and making me finally decide that I was going to need something to take away that itch after a night sleeping in a hot, humid bed that was full of sand and ants that made their pilgrimage to the other side of the room.

Right, so now I've covered just how many insect bites I am covered in (why its just us two I'm not sure, but even the locals are looking as us a bit weird as if we have caught some sort of new strain of ant flu (now how cool would that be) and almost hesitant to serve us. Now its on to the other small bit of news we have which would be the red scooter that's staring us in the face at the moment. This is our newest temporary addition to the family and will be with us for the next couple of days, allowing us to get from our beach to town and back again relatively cheaply and to any other places we want to go.

Now in booking one of these little guys, you surrender your passport which you get back on its safe return, and just generally hope that leaving a motorcycle outside your bungalow is safe enough (otherwise its a small 2,000USD fee to replace it, as insurance hasn't quite got this far across the pacific yet) so after paying our $6 per day and heading off, we soon realised that we had been doing a steady 0/kph for quite a while now, and also that according to our odometer we had traveled less than a kilometre. Now anywhere in the west this would almost certainly be a cause for concern (especially given that we had been given one helmet to share between us - we figured that if we ever needed it in a crash we would simply split it haha....) but here in Cambodia this is simply the norm and we continued on our merry way. In all honesty though, it would be a death-wish to exceed 30kph on Cambodian roads, so it's pretty safe we figure!

Then there's the small issue of the road with the giant potholes, and you soon have even more respect for those motorbike taxi drivers with how they navigate over them (you can probably tell we have been rather unsuccessful with that so far) but apart from that its all been a rather pleasant relationship thus far.

So that's pretty much been the latest new bits in our journey, we headed down to the local movie place this morning and got a private lounge for $4 which was rather cool to watch movies in, and then this afternoon has resulted in us applying tiger-balm and lazing around (man that stuff heats up!) and thus we are back in the same internet cafe licking our wounds (not actually, tiger-balm knows how to cause discomfort around the eyes, and if anyone EVER suggests using it for sunburn, they deserve a public execution).
Anywho will catch up again in another couple of days!

Ciao, and long live the little red scooter!

Posted by carl.adams 01:54 Archived in Cambodia Tagged backpacking

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Hey boys
Happy New Year! Can't wait to hear what you have planned for 2010...

by Mel

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