So we left Saigon on monday and headed for Phnom Penh at 8 30am. The bus journey was supposed to only take 6 hours but it ended up being 10 hours. Typical, we broke down for an hour and the traffic was certainly not on our side. When we bought the bus ticket the agency said luxury bus. They lied. I have never had such cramped legs. We was going down some of the worst roads i have witnessed so far. Everyone was bouncing out of there seats. Our driver thought he was competing in lets set a new world record for the most amounts of over takes i can do. Every time we did this we was playing chicken with on coming traffic and most of them would have to veer off the road to avoid a head on crash.
I was really looking forward to arriving in Cambodia as i had heard so many good and bad reports about the country. All i can say is WOW. What a country. It's amazing. Were in Phnom Penh and i was expecting a shanty city but it's so developed. I have never seen so many cars since arriving in asia. You see hummers, mercs, audi's so there's obviously a bit of money around here. Ok, so the country is not perfect. It's probably one of the most corrupt country's in the world but that just makes me like it even more. The government don't care who they kill or what they destroy just as long as they get there wish. It's sad for the people and not nice to witness some of the things they've done. They even receive back hander's from an un named air line firm not to improve the roads so more people fly but that's ending in 2008. You can get drugs easier than bottled water over here.
We arrived here and got a tuc tuc to the number 9 guest house and decided to stay here. Mark went to check out the room and decided to take it. What a dive it was to. All it had was a bed in and a flickery old light. It was scummy and i don't know why he took it but it served it's purpose for 3 nights. It was only $3 a night, shared toilet and bathroom facility's and no hot water. This is just the start of the no hot water situation. I haven't had a hot shower for 8 days now and i probably won't until i leave cambodia. The guest house did have the perks of 24 hour food and drink. It also over looks a huge lake which has an amazing sun set with the cities skyline in the back ground.
That night we went out to discover the wonders of Phnom Penh and it didn't disappoint. Ok so there's not a great deal to do but the bars it does have are great. A lot of them have english working there and everyone is soooooo friendly. We met a guy called Ian in Vang Vieng in Laos and he works in a bar here called the sponge bar so we have spent a lot of time in here. Some of you can probably remember the Khmer Rouge era. This is sickening to learn about. From 1975 to 1979 a crazy guy called Pol Pot dictated the country in one of the worst blood baths the world has ever witnessed. Actually the world failed to see what was going on as cambodia shut down it's satellite's and border crossings. Know one in the world had contact with the country so therefore the killings began. Around 3 million people were brutally killed using know more than farming tools or torture tactics. Women and children killed by the thousands. Anyone other than farmers where to be killed. If you had an education, wore glasses or was intellectually sound was to be slaughtered. Over of a quarter of the country population was wiped out. This only came to an end when word spread in to thailand and there army invaded Pol pot's men and defeated them. Pol Pot was not caught for years and he eventually died in 1998. There's a big thing on the news at the moment as they have only just caught the 3rd ever person involved in Pol Pots army.
We visited the Choeung ek killing fields and boy did that hit you in the guts and leave you searching for air. Here was around 20000 skulls of where people had been murdered. They are all stored in this tower like building and you get to see them all. You can see cracks on them from where they were hit. After looking at them we got a guide to walk us around and explain things to us. He showed us graves and trees where baby's would be whacked against to kill them. Whilst walking around with him he showed cloaths which are still half buried, bones coming out from the ground and teeth of the victims. It was horrible. After that we went to the Tuol Sleng museum which use to be a school but was used as a prision during there leadership. That night we just went out with some canadian chicks we had met in the day. We also bumped in to steph and laura again.
The next day hung over we fell out of our bed and headed to the Russian market. Funny enough there was no Russian's in sight so i cant explain how it gets it's name. We searched this sweaty, rat filled infested den for about 3 hours in search of bargains but all i managed was to find was some vests. $2 each. Bargain.
The following day we was off to sihanoukville for a few nights but before we left we had to pay our bill. $87 they charged us. Only $9 for our room and the rest in food and drink. We got ripped off so badly so if anyone ever stays at the number 9 guesthouse don't run a tab.
The only bad things iv heard about since i have been here is bag snatching. Some french bird was on a back of a motorbike and some local rode past and made a grab. Unfortunately for her she got pulled off the bike and got run over by a minibus and died. Harsh