Monday, 14 September 2015


we started our day with another trip on a boat,

so down to the jetty we went,

the water was low as it is at this time of the year,

all aboard the Skylark!

again we had the boat to ourselves,

so upstairs,

for breakfast,

as we were waiting one of the swift/swallows came to rest near us,

he is looking at me looking at him,

breakfast arrives,


and fresh croissants,

as we are leaving another vessel pulls in, 

today we have booked a cruise to Silk Island, above is one of the unladen sand/gravel barges,

the barges go up unloaded and return full, one is slowly catching us up,

I do not know why, but with the two large white rings above the anchor I feel it looks like a giant bird is chasing us,

it soon overhauls us,

as the captain has slowed so we can look at some of the riverside houses, the other gentleman beside him is our guide for the day,

4 houses in two different styles,
I have to say I prefer one of the three,

more traditional style ones,

a fishing boat goes past,

as we get near to the ferry crossing,

a roll on roll off ferry has to keep a good look out,

for these low in the water fully loaded barges,

it seems incredible they do not get swamped,

passengers waiting for the ferry,

one comes in behind us,

but we are soon past it, 

legs, no not the song, these are mine and if you look closely you will see some marks on both of them at roughly the same level,

so far every time we have been in a tuk-tuk I have hit my leg on the step, either getting in or out of it, the trouble is I know I am going to do it again some time soon,

 one full barge at anchor next to one waiting to be loaded, 

for me is amazing how low in the water the full one is,

a quick pose,

after an hour or so we started to slow down,

passing a few boats,

and a few resorts,

no luck today,

we watched as he pulled his net in with not a single fish,

we past a few more resorts,

then came to a halt,

as the Mekong Pandaw reversed into the river to continue its journey,

the captain waiting for the bank to be clear,

the ship turned through 180 degrees,

and then the command I would love to make, 'Captain, full ahead both and bring me a pink gin!',

we moved into the space left,

where our guide got ready to show us around,

the captain making sure the boat was secure,

then Diana has to walk the plank,

we arrived a few days to late for the fun fair,

it was being dismantled,

and it had a train as well,

this is where we were heading, a traditional Cambodian weaving farm,

showing all stages of production,

we had a quick look at a loom,

and had a sample of locally produced fruits,

naturally there were lots of things to buy,

after a look around,

 one of the sisters that runs the shop explained how the silk was made,

from eggs and moths to the finished product,

there is something about old sewing machines that I find fascinating,

this one of the many makes I had never heard of before,

food for the silkworms, mulberry leaves,

whilst we were being shown around work was still going on,

it was fascinating to watch,

with several different operations,

to be made before with lighting speed the shuttle goes from one side to the other, the operator's hand just a blur,

one more line done,

and ready for the next,

another boat load of tourists arrived, one of them trying his hand at weaving, on the second try the shuttle became stuck, someone commenting, '12 hours of work destroyed in 20 seconds!',

well Diana just had to have a try,

I do not think the sisters will have to worry about losing their jobs!

Diana did decided on a shawl, the one we watched being made,

it was going to take some time to finish,

but we were not in a rush, some time later the finishing touches were being put in place,

then to the next part of the trip, 

by horse and cart,

we were soon on our way,

and had a pleasant ride through the countryside,

looking at the sights as we went,

a local farmer with cut corn plants on the back of his bike,

we passed a number of temples,

but did not stop,

at them until,

we reached this one, the lobster temple,

why it has that name I do not know,

but outside of it at the entrance there are two huge lobster statues,

I have to say that many of the next few pictures will be poorly framed,

or slightly out of focus,

that is because I am on the back of the cart,

bouncing around like a ping-pong ball in a bucket,

we did not stop,

so all of these were taken,

at a fast trot,

I was pretty pleased that as many looked as good as they did,

I guess that the reason we did not stop,

was that as part of the trip,

we would stop at a resort for lunch,

which was now waiting for us,

as we had waited longer than normal,

for Diana's shawl to be finished at the silk farm,

so a quick goodbye to the temple,

and a journey to the Smango Hotel,

we made our way past the main building,

along a path,

that leads to the pool,

and bar area,

and at the end of the path this is where we will be having lunch,

our own little dining room overlooking the Mekong river,

so wait and see what out lunch will be,

the lunch was included,

but the beer was not,


whilst we were waiting Diana tried on her shawl,

then in no time the food arrived,

fried chicken and morning glory,

food please!

lunch over I took a wander to look at the river,

on the far side I could see what I thought was a line of sand, but it moved,

I then thought it must be the shadow from a cloud,

but it was not, two rivers meet here in Phnom Penh, the Tonlé Sap and the Mekong, both are different colors and here is where they mix,

also worthy of note this is one of the rare places on earth where depending on the season the river will change the direction of flow,

back to the meal,

well all of that walking gave me a thirst,

so back on the boat for the trip home,

now this was a bit of a worry, 

as Diana engages in a bit of 'left hand down a bit' hopefully the boat is insured,

I found a new best friend, I had not seen this Kingdom beer before, nice it was too,

Diana doing what one does best on a cruise, daydreaming,

we make our way back along the river,

the captain keeping a sharp lookout,

we pass the fishing village,

and tie up to the dock,

back to the hotel for a shower and a change,

then as soon as Mark arrived we were off for the evening, this time walking past a few restaurants near to the hotel,

and into this street, 

where we stopped at the Dolphin Bar,

I believe it was called and meet up with Jay,

shrimp tapas,

for Mark,

spring rolls,

for Diana,

tomato soup for Jay,

finally for myself, 

chicken satay,

on to our main courses, spaghetti Bolognese for Diana,

pork tenderloin with mushroom sauce and mash potato for Mark,

a chicken kiev with cheese for Jay,

and for myself, a slice of leg of lamb, the food we all agreed was first class, as an aside including a bottle of Italian wine the bill for Diana and myself was under 1,000 baht,

we said farewell to Mark as Jay wanted to show us an upstairs cocktail bar,

called Le Moon on the riverfront,

so up we went, a nice view of the riverside,

and the river itself,

the upstairs bar ablaze with coloured lights,

so cocktails,

and smiles all round,

Jay joined us for one,

as one of the cruise ships sailed past,

I am getting to quite like the cocktail 3 or 4 hours,

the lights is the bar changing every so often,

I think I will have another,

served by a happy smiling waiter,

'Cheers!', from all of us,

well I had to try Diana's,

another cruise boat sails past,

then one more for the road for Diana,

and myself, 'Cheers!', again and with that we were on our way back to the hotel and off to bed.

No comments: