In Batambang, Cambodia for a little less than 24 hours. Tomorrow will be the trip to Thailand. And the flying home the day after that!
Batambang is cooler than anywhere else we’ve been. As context, I’ve worn the same outfit all day instead of having to change due to clothes being drenched in sweat. Also, Julie and I have had out air conditioning going full blast is every hotel we’ve been in, but I got back to the room today and it seemed a little too cool. We were met with a downpour as we made our way from lunch to our hotel, so that may have cooled things.
Tuk-tuk tour of Batambang.
We visited rice paper making place, bamboo steamed rice making place (yum), rice noodle making place. Drove by the fish paste making place. Took a ride on the bamboo train, which is something a tourist is obligated to do here. The bamboo train is a platform made of bamboo, with wheels from American tanks, and a motorcycle motor. We sat on the platform on a banana leaf mat and small cushions, and a driver raced us through the wilderness… untill we’d come across another car coming the other direction, at which time we’d disembark so our driver could disassemble our car to let the other go by. We had to do this a few times on the way out: the ultimate destination was a village of children trying to sell us bracelets and drinks.
The ride back was quicker, as we only had to stop once to do the car-switch. On the way there it was three or four times.
The bamboo train won’t last much longer. It is based on the disused tracks p from the old Cambodian train system, and this is going to be rebuilt starting within the next couple of years.
Recipe for bamboo sticky rice: put sticky rice, coconut milk, beans in bamboo pipe. Cook in fire for an hour. Peel bamboo away. Eat delicious sticky rice. (There are a few details I missed as I was consuming a sample while our guide spoke.)