A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about beach

Bali and Gilis...

...my final week in Indonesia...and in south-east Asia...at least until next time!

Bali. A word or destination that many people hear these days and grimace about skeptically. After they say “don’t take drugs” of course… Nevertheless, I was looking forward to a week of relaxing and party before coming to grips with the reality that it was almost time for me to return to the real world.

I met Lena in Bali and we stayed in Kuta. It was actually a good spot though as the place was really nice, right near the beach and the cheap shopping and where you go out and what not, but wasn’t right in the middle of the trashy going out district. Which lets face it was trashy, but that can be fun from time to time. And to be fair, it was not much different to places such as Chewang Beach in Koh Samui.

The people in Bali were really just as lovely as everywhere else we’d been in Indonesia, if not more lovely as they are used to drunk Aussie bogans hurling abuse at them unfortunately. We would speak Bahasa and they would say “oh, you’re so polite!” even if it was just “ma kasih” (the shortened version of thankyou). Definitely didn’t have the problem of being accosted and held for photos and autographs in Bali that seems to be the case in the rest of Indonesia, although one Indonesian lady, who seemed quite out of place in Bali (which is predominantly Hindu – literally it’s like going to another country compared to Java) did accost me in front of the memorial and practically hold me down until she got her photo.

I expected to see the memorial, but it haunted me quite a bit to see it, which I didn’t expect. Mainly because there are groups of people posing for photos in front of it, as they drunkenly stumble on their way to a big night out, similar to how the victims of the bombings would have been. As you drive past the places that have been built from both the 2002 and 2005 bombings (only the Sari Club hasn’t been rebuilt – can’t say I’d want to go to it though, or any of the places that they have redone for that matter) the taxi drives point them out and say “Bali bomb 1” or “Bali bomb 2”. Also security in that place is crazy, but it’s good. There are boom gates across every driveway, and security guards check under the cars with mirrors, and check the boot and doors for trip wires before a car can drive in anywhere. Also all bags are scanned or searched before entering anywhere, and guys are patted down when going into clubs (although bribery is still rife, and I heard of one guy who managed to pay a security guard off to avoid a strip search as apparently they suspected him for carrying drugs). Still sometimes I wonder – one security guard inspected one of the girls’ boxes of tampons for an unusually long amount of time!

I guess the threat is always there, but unfortunately for the victims of the bombings I fear it was just a case of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. And I guess it’s up to the individual to decide how much the threat of extremists is going to stop them from going places that they want to go and doing things they want to do. But as for all of the stories that make the front page of Australian newspapers claiming that Aussie tourists have been bashed and assaulted by Indonesians, I can guarantee the Indonesians wouldn’t have started it. They want us there! I was in a taxi with Jenee and Talia (the Kiwis) one night, and he asked where we were from. They said “Selandia Baru” and I said “Australie”. As soon as I said that he said “Bagus! Australia means good money for me!”

We barely spent any time at Kuta during the day, unless it was at our infinity pool on the top level of our hotel that looked out over the sea (so how could you blame us?!) There was a mini-ACICIS crew heading to Bali from Jakarta, so we all got to hang out with each other and our respective friends who had come over from home to meet us, and it was a lot of fun. During the day we went to places like Ulu Watu, Padang-Padang beach, Dreamland beach (apparently not so dreamy as Lena got stung by a jellyfish there…although it was stunning), Ubud and it’s surrounding rice paddies, Candi Dasa, where I went snorkeling…I will write that again for effect/in case you though you misread it – where I went snorkeling! Yes that’s right people. There are photos on my Facebook to prove it. And there’s more where that came from.

Everyone knows Bali can be done very cheaply, and this isn’t just if you stay in a dive, don’t eat and do nothing but lie on the beach and get sunburnt. No joke, going out every place has promotions like ‘buy one, get one free’ and ‘free welcome drink’, but my favourite was Sky Garden, where shamefully I admit I went every night whilst staying in Kuta, purely because of the free drinks on offer every night for an hour for guys and an hour-and-a-half for girls. The place we went all the time had three levels – the Asian level, the old men level, and the free drinks level where all the ‘normal’ people (a.k.a. Aussies) hung. If you are smart, you wont buy any drinks at all. Most nights we were smart. But if you are not smart you are in big trip, seeing as most of the drinks you buy are about $6 with 3 shots each in them!

A couple of nights we decided to exude a little bit of class at a posh bar in Seminyak before heading out. One of them was Talia’s birthday, which ironically was also Valentine’s Day. Best night out in Bali for sheezy. We started off at Potato Head, a renowned bar in Seminyak that everybody had told us we ‘had’ to go to. And OMG it’s amazing! For those of you who has seen episode 1, season 2 of Gossip Girl (and yes I am exercising my GG knowledge and writing skills at the same time here) picture the white party! There’s an infinity pool with a swim up bar that is right on the beach and then a big lawn area and a DJ and tables by the pool and then a restaurant. And to top it all off, it was the most amazing sunset I think I have ever seen! Being Talia’s birthday and all, we splurged and ate dinner there, but it was quite funny having this long table and a loud group of Aussies (and Kiwis) when everyone else was sitting around in tables of two, talking quietly by hushed candle light. What made it equally as funny was that it was me, Talia, Jenee, Ella, Kate Raous (all from ACICIS), Ella’s two friends, Ellie and Kaitlin, and then Ben. The only boy at the table, happily sipping away on cocktails with the rest of us, completely comfortable with his sexuality. Then as we were leaving some middle-aged man commented something along the lines of “he must be having a good Valentine’s Day”, so we decided to propose in an appropriately cheesy, ‘The Batchelor’-style Valentine’s Day-special, type photo. I don’t have it, but I wish I did…stay tuned…hilarious…

Being the pov people that we are (may I point out that we weren’t aware of the free-drinks scenario at this stage) we went back to where Kate was staying with her mum and her sister (as they had their own private pool!) to have beers and birthday cake. We got a bit too carried away with the pres, so much so that we missed the free drinks! Meaning that we HAD to resort to the three-shot drink option. I didn’t take any photos that night but I feel like other peoples on Facebook will say what else needs to be said. However, it was a very fun night. I’m jealous, I want my birthday to be on Valentine’s Day!

Towards the end of the week, everyone was either heading home or to the Gili Islands, off Lombok. After much deliberation and a flood of messages telling us how amazing the Gilis were, Lena and I decided to make an impromptu trip there for two nights. And thank God we did, as it is literally paradise! There are several Gili Islands. We went to Gili Trawangan, which is meant to be the ‘party Gili’, which don’t get me wrong, it is, but it’s no Bali or Koh Samui or Koh Phangan (at least not yet), which is awesome. The only form of transport on the island are pushies and these little horse and cart things, so in a way, it really is quite remote. Talia and I rode around the island one day and it took us about an hour, which included stopping to take copious amounts of photos, as it truly was so beautiful.

Unless you’re really into diving, there’s not a whole lot to do on the island besides lying on the beach and going out, which is awesome! Although be proud – I did do more snorkeling, and one day we possibly think we saw a shark (which Talia was very excited about because she loves sharks, me however, no so much…) There are also copious amounts of beachside bars around the island, where you can go and have a Bintang and watch the sunset over the volcanoes of Bali. Another easy way to pass time. Although riding home can be somewhat of an adventure…

I really wish I could just explain how amazing Gilis was, but unfortunately my writing (and photographic) talents cannot do them justice…so you’ll just have to go there! And take me – I want to go back!

And then just like that, four months came to an end. And I’ve never wanted to go home less. Similar to how I was upset about leaving home back in October, because I was scared everything would change while I was gone (even though I should know by now that it never does!) I had tears in my eyes in the cab on the way to Denpasar airport. (I know that you should never trust emotional writers, but this is true!) Sure I’m excited to sleep in my own bed, and see my Mum and my friends and eat rice crackers and cheese, but it would be nice if I could just go home and do that for a week, repack my bag so I have a new batch of five t-shirts to wear for the next few months, and head back out into the world again. But unfortunately tidak funds and the fact that I would like to finish uni in under the six-year time-frame, are preventing me from this at the moment, so I will just have to take comfort in the fact that the reason I’m so sad at the prospect of going home is because I had more fun than I ever thought was possible. So without being too sentimental and soppy, thanks to each and every person I encountered on my journey – I will never forget our crazy antics and the amazing experiences that we shared, and wherever you all live in the world, I aim to re-enact them again with you all, STAT! So until then, look me up if you’re in Melbourne (as as much as I don’t want to go home, it truly is the best city in the world!). And if you ever need a travel buddy (and I haven’t annoyed you to death just yet), I’m there!

“A journey is best measured in friends, rather than miles.” – Cahill.

xoxo

Posted by ljmac2 04:00 Archived in Indonesia Tagged beaches melbourne snorkelling taxi sunset bali beach volcanoes memorial security english bars scuba_diving lombok kuta dreamland ubud seminyak gilis gili_trawangan gili_islands bahasa_indonesia bali_bombings pedang-pedang candi_dasa acicis infinity_pool potato_head Comments (0)

Jakarta and about 1000 islands in between...

...or 130 to be more specific

rain 27 °C

So just putting it out there – totally met K.Rudd today. We got told we were going to leave Bahasa class early because of something to do with Kevin Rudd and sandwiches. We were initially just excited by the fact that we got a free lunch AND it was sandwiches. Perhaps they were Kevin Rudd’s sandwiches? But no, he was actually there, and came to the university to see us and give a bit of a speech. He’s a smart cookie – gave a very good and relevant speech that it seemed like he had just prepared off the top of his head. And he made a point of going around and introducing himself to everyone in the room. We were told not to ask him any questions about ‘prickly domestic issues’, so I asked him how he thought the Lions were going to do this year – he said he wasn’t sure…

Anyway, that was some unscheduled excitement for the day. I have just got home from playing futsal with everyone after school – it’s a pity I didn’t really play team sports growing up and it’s heaps of fun besides the fact that I suck and everyone else is professh, even the girls! But oh well at least it’s some exercise…I haven’t really done some since dancing on the tables at Ankgor What?! And of course Friday dance parties at school…

So I am well and truly settling into life in Jakarta…well at least life as it is for the next two weeks whilst we have class – just as we get fully into the routine, it’s all going to change when we start work next week! But the day starts at 8.30 every morning with Bahasa Indonesia class for four hours – luckily we get ‘istirihat’ in this time (break time – my favourite word!) and they weren’t just priming us with coffee and food on our first day – it’s the same every day! But Indonesian is pretty funny…people have come out of their shells a bit and everyone has a good laugh. For example, did you know that the Indonesian word for vomit is ‘muntu-muntu’? Classic!

Then in the afternoon we have had lectures on Indonesia, stuff like economics, politics, religion, and so on… Except last week one morning we were thrown out of whack when we had an ‘opening ceremony’ for the program and then a trip to the Australian Embassy. I guess I didn’t realize how much of a big deal this program seems to be for our host university, Atma Jaya. They full on gave all these speeches about how important it is for Australia and Indonesia to be friends (and they’re right) and how good it is that we came on the program seeing that over 16,000 Indonesian students go to study in Australia every year, but we make up a quarter of the Australian students who come to study in Indonesia. Plus they had a gong…you know something’s a big deal when there’s a gong…

The trip to the Embassy was cool, namely because that was by far the best catered food we’ve been given so far…and that was only for morning tea! But the actual building that the Australian Embassy was in was amazing. Of course it is well famed for being bombed back in 2004 I think it was, so it is a labyrinth of security checks to get in (although they didn’t take my Swiss army knife USB off me I might add…tut tut) but the grounds were all beautifully landscaped and the building was modern…there was even someone doing bombs (or in cannonballs the more PC term?) into a pool! It’s claim to fame is that it’s the biggest Australian Embassy in the world, but really, it could be just a super nice kos… Anyway, they just gave us speeches and stuff…starting off with the security talk to scare the life out of us, but then finishing off with stuff like AusAID, so we left feeling warm and fuzzy and not so concerned about living in Jakarta! (Seriously Mum, don’t stress, it’s fine!)

It was rather unfortunate that the day before we were due to go to the Embassy, my one pair of ‘nice’ shoes broke, so all I had to wear was runners or thongs…I felt that they would just think I was being patriotic and be more likely to let me in in thongs (which by the way aren’t classified as shoes here, so were not meant to wear them to class, let alone the Embassy!) Anyway, no one important really said anything, but the next day we went across the road for lunch, and then there was this massive downpour right as we needed to get back to class, and the LOs were like “don’t go out in this storm” (which we didn’t initially, so we were late and we still got in trouble despite adhering to the safety and security lecture!) but then in the end we did and one of my thongs got swept away down the drain. So we turned up to class drenched, late, and I was carrying one thong – apparently that was at the height of disrespect…they’re not even proper shoes and I only had one of them!

So this weekend just gone was the first of the weekend trips, which was the topic of much discussion, such as who’s going to go where and with who…so high school, yet so hilarious. Anyway, we started our night with karaoke on the Friday (I have never been to so much karaoke in my life until this trip!) and then on Saturday morning headed out to one of the falsely names 1000 Islands (there are actually only 130 or something…) That boat ride was officially the worst travel experience of my life! And for two of the people who were on our trip it was their first time on a boat…talk about baptism by fire! (They are both 19 – we referred to them as ‘the kids’ the entire weekend.) It was two-and-a-half hours of practically hitting your head on the roof of the boat as it crashed so hard over the waves it sounded like the hull was breaking, getting drenched through the leaking roof, and listening to babies crying and people throwing up all around you – luckily most of us took travel pills so only one of us was sick. The trip was only meant to be an hour and a half, but the swell was so bad that it took longer…the boat driver just kept on powering through! Amy, if you’re reading this I would have taken those trips between the Thai islands 10 times before doing this trip once! Although luckily we were on the ‘expensive’ boat – another girl’s boat who was going out to a different island got turned around, and another boat with a whole group of ACICIS people on it was a fishing boat, where they all had to sit on the floor, 80% of the people on the boat were sick, and there was a wailing family mourning a death on board, complete with the body!

Luckily, the island was worth the trip! Beautiful clear, turquoise water, non-Jakarta fresh air…it’s wasn’t exactly beachy weather (it is the wet season here after all…) but just as well, as some people still managed to get sunburnt! (Not me with my ‘tan’ South-East Asian skin!) The island we went to was called Pulau Putri, and there were eight of us who went, so we aptly named ourselves the PPP – or the Pulau Putri Posse. We spent our time snorkeling (well not me, but I did swim in the sea so be proud!), ‘tanning’, at the tunnel aquarium, in the pool, and just generally chilling with a casual beverage or two…oh and planning our debut album (see Facebook for the photos, then you’ll understand… ) It was very relaxing, besides the thought of the dreaded boat ride back! But luckily the trip back was positively smooth in comparison, with no ‘muntu-muntu’ from any of us!

375986_101..58472_n.jpg

Anyway, that’s about all my news thus far. Got to go and get my study on…but as promised I have learnt how to say bye in Bahasa Indonesia – da-dah! I knew they said it was an easy language to learn for a reason…

Posted by ljmac2 05:16 Archived in Indonesia Tagged boats beach jakarta indonesia kos classes ankgor_what?! atma_jaya lectures pulau_putri 1000_islands kevin_rudd Comments (0)

Nha Trang

...the unknown Russian state

overcast 26 °C

So I think I may have over-budgeted on the tan…

Seriously, Nha Trang was nice and all, but the weather was less than desirable…although from the ever informative CNN, I get the feeling it has been like that around a lot of South-East Asia.

So as for similarities between Ho Chi Min and Nha Trang, they include hating Americans and both being Vietnamese cities. (However, I will say that one thing the Vietnamese definitely get from the Yanks, even if they don’t like to admit it, is the whole flag patriotism thing. Seriously you can’t swing a cat without it being there! The same goes for the communism flag with the hammer and sickle on it – it’s everywhere!) The differences however are far more interesting. For starters, Nha Trang is on the coast, whilst Ho Chi Minh is not, and also Nha Trang is basically a state of Russia – there are Russian tourists everywhere! Seriously everything is written in Vietnamese, English…and Russian! And from my experience of walking into many places and being spoken to in a language I don’t understand (as apparently I look Russian, or at least European by the way…), I would say Russian is the preferred second language here…it’s so weird, probably the only place I haven’t travelled to where English isn’t the preferred second language. There are even flights direct from Russia to Nha Trang. Either it’s the whole communism thing, or some rich Russian bought a big bit of land down the Vietnam coast…

Anyway, besides from the lackluster weather, we had a fabulous time in Nha Trang. We stayed at a beautiful hotel, which made things just that little bit nicer, and in all honesty, the weather (or lack thereof) made us get out and see Nha Trang in ways that we probably wouldn’t have done otherwise.

One day we went to the local market, which compared to those in Ho Chi Minh, Siem Reap and Phnom Penh was really quite paltry, but we still managed to buy five pairs of shoes between us among other things! I swear, one day I will go on a trip where I don’t have to send anything home…so far I am onto box three!

Then another day we went to the hot springs and mudbaths, which was actually really cool, and I’m glad we went as it gave me the opportunity to swim somewhere that wasn’t absolutely freezing (seeing they don’t heat their pools over here as apparently it’s warm all the time!) However, we didn’t realize it was a whole day kind of thing, we thought it was you just go and have a dip and be on your way. But there were mud baths and mineral springs and mineral Jacuzzi and mineral pools and mineral waterfalls and all manner of things that took up the majority of the day. It would have been good to know that before we went. Not only is the mud meant to be amazing for your skin, but being in the pool where the water is 37.5-39 degrees Celsius is meant to be so good for you that you don’t even have to pretend to exercise by doing laps – awesome!

On probably the gloomiest day we had there, Christmas Eve, we went to Vinpearl, which is basically an amusement park on a neighbouring island. It was so cold that I had to wear leggings and a cardigan, clothes that I had only brought with me to wear to work in Jakarta, where I have to dress respectfully and what not. Anyway, to get over to Vinpearl you get a cable car, which is all included in the price of the ticket, which is very reasonable really seeing it is $18 including the cable car, the water park (pity it was so freezing, the waterslides looked awesome!), the underwater world (fancy word for aquarium), the food and shopping centre, and the indoor and outdoor theme parks. Given the poor weather (as otherwise I totally would have spent all my time on the waterslides!) we got to have a good look at everything. I even convinced Mum to go on the rollercoaster…apparently she likes the Scenic Rollercoaster at Luna Park, however after this particular outing she informed me that her rollercoaster days were over! At the indoor theme park there was one of those 4D virtual rides that we went on, where they show a movie in 3D and you sit on this platform that kind of moves with it so you feel like you’re in the movie. Anyway, Mum and I were the only anglos to be seen for a mile and man you should have heard everyone else’s reactions to all the twists and turns they took (virtually) on the movie screen…they were screaming and squealing, I swear they thought it was real – hilarious, the best part of it!

Anyway, I suppose this has been a rather short blog, but there is only so much you can write about sleeping in and having leisurely breakfasts and reading whilst you listen to the waves crash on the beach… But I hope you all had a fabulous Christmas wherever you happened to be in the world, and that you all managed to share it with good people who were good fun. Christmas is a bit of a non-event in our family now, but we are thinking of you always ☺ xoxo

Posted by ljmac2 05:07 Archived in Vietnam Tagged beach market shopping vietnam weather language english ho_chi_minh_city americans nha_trang vinpearl mud_baths russians Comments (0)

Sihanoukville!

affectionately known as shnooks...

sunny 30 °C

So for this week’s blog, unfortunately I’m not going to sound like an altruistic volunteer, but rather more like your image of the typical backpacker that comes to South-East Asia (try not to cringe!) This week we only had school on Monday, due to the Water Festival holiday. Actually, the Water Festival was cancelled nation-wide this year, as due to the floods a) everyone is a bit over water, and b) the government decided that the money normally spent on the Water Festival, could be better spent on things such as rice. Plus, I think after the goings on at that bridge in Phnom Penh at last years Festival is still a bit raw in everyone’s minds, and there’s only so much such a small country can handle. However, that’s no reason not to have a holiday! So this year’s Water Festival holiday was just sans Water Festival.

Amelia, Courtnay and I, who are all conveniently working at the same school so we all have the same holidays (some other schools were still open Tuesday and Wednesday as they are trying to catch up after being closed for so long during the floods), decided to make the most of this super-long weekend, by going to Sihanoukville, a town down on the coast. We’d heard mixed reviews so were not sure what to expect – oh my Buddha it was so much fun!

If you’re after a relaxing seaside holiday then it’s not really the place to be – it’s definitely not the most beautiful beach in the world, however the Khmer’s know no different and they love it! On the map of the beach it lists ‘bars for tourists’ and ‘bars for Khmers’, and literally as you walk down the beach you get to a point and there are no white people around. They love it though – down the Khmer end of the boat there are jet skis, banana boat rides, this massive jumping castle thing that you climb and then jump off into the water…it looked too good not to investigate, so I must admit we did wander down there amongst many stares, even though we decided to go swimming in our clothes as we thought that might be more PC. All of the kids there splash around in the shallows wearing life jackets, as I guess compulsory swimming lessons are not a part of the education system over here, and many of them were fascinated but us white beasts walking by! However from what I saw there compared to what I see at school, I’d say those who flock to the beach must be in a much higher income bracket by Cambodian standards.

There are different parts to the town, but the main drag where we stayed is Serendipity Beach. Pretty much it consists of a paved road at the top of the hill, lined with backpackers and shops, which then leads on to the aptly named ‘Dirt Road’ which leads down to the beach and the bars down there. Man we thought Siem Reap was a small town, but it’s got nothing on Sihanoukville! We were there four days and three nights, and by the end of our time there we pretty much knew every Westerner that worked in Serendipity Beach! It’s very easy to get a job at one of the bars there if you’re a backpacker – you just get free accommodation, food and drinks and work nights, which is pretty much just going out anyway so it looks like lots fun. Some of the people who work there are permanent and have been there for years; some are just backpackers passing through and work anywhere from a few weeks to a few months. It’s also a regular port for the Australian Navy and the US Marines, so they are always keen for a big night out when they’re off the boat, so kind of like at Koh Phangan, it’s all lazy days and big nights every in Sihanoukville!

The hostel we stayed at we ended up meeting a group of British guys who apparently we’d met in Siem Reap (it was a little awkward when we didn’t remember them but they got over it!) so one day we went with them and a couple of British girls who were staying at the next hostel down, to these waterfalls about 10ks out of town. We hired motos to get there, which is an experience in itself, in that the people that hire them to you pretty much don’t care if you don’t have an international license, they just warn you that if you get pulled over you’ll have to pay the police. Well, boy are the police in Sihanoukville sitting on a goldmine! The minute they see a white person on a bike they pull you over. Being a group of about 7 bikes we stuck out like a sore thumb, so I think we got pulled over about four times on the same stretch of road! Then you pretty much have to barter with them how much you’re going to pay them. They all start at $20, but the locals luckily told us that it should only be $2, so most of us could get them down to that, except Amelia, who felt bad and paid them $10! Luckily, after being pulled over once, they generally let you go the next time if you tell they you’ve already paid the fine. We called it getting ‘pulled’ and it’s definitely an art – when they let you go they all walk off and compare how much they got from each bike…they were all very disappointed that they didn’t all pull Amelia’s bike!

So we did eventually reach the waterfalls, although not without further incident, when the British girls skidded their bike and landed square in the mud. Luckily they were alright, so we could laugh at their hilarious orange facials, that didn’t even come off after standing under the pounding waterfalls! Unfortunately I couldn’t tell you the name of the waterfalls to save my life, but it was cool that it was kind of like a local Khmer hang out, and they hadn’t gone out of their way to set it up for tourists. You literally had to go rock climbing to get to where you could swim, during which I stacked it, and dropped one of my thongs down the waterfall. Luckily it wasn’t anything more valuable…and luckily those kids there are good at rock climbing, as one of them climbed down to the bottom of the waterfall and got it for me! I don’t like to support child labour, but I bought some cashews from her just for her efforts…

The next day the same crew, plus pretty much everyone staying at the two big hostels in Serendipity Beach, went on a booze cruise run by one of the bars down on the beach. Let me tell you, booze cruises in Sihanoukville put the one’s unis have back home to shame! I wouldn’t exactly say the boat was designed to host a booze cruise, but that made it all the more fun. The ‘bar’ downstairs was a little Khmer lady with an esky and a lifejacket and next to her was an ipod and a massive speaker and that was the dance floor. So we just went out to sea where the water was beautiful and clear and the beaches were empty, and then everyone took turns at jumping off the boat after a beer can, etc, etc. Luckily we were rowdy enough that there were no fish in that part of the sea! Then the boat sailed back at sunset, then just before the pier it put the anchor down and there was a massive dance party on the boat. The face paint had come out by this stage, so I don’t think the clothes I wore that day will ever be the same again! Amelia set herself the challenge of not showering and only swimming the whole time we were away, so pretty much, she was a ranger for four days!

So yes, pretty much, the rest of the time was just spent hanging out at the beach or in the bars…it’s pretty hard to get anywhere fast in Sihanoukville, as you always see someone you know!

Oh yes, how could I forget…Courtnay got a tattoo whilst we were in Sihanoukville! You are probably all thinking stupid idiot getting one in Asia (that’s what she got blasted from her mum anyway!) but she’d wanted it for a while and they make you inspect the needle before they use it to show you that it is new. It was actually a very interesting experience – but don’t worry Mum, I’m not tempted to get one! Apparently getting a tattoo is meant to be the second most painful experience after childbirth, and from looking at the photos, she very well could be having a baby! She got it on her foot, which from the yells and screams the people ten shops away could hear, it is actually very painful. Amelia and my hands were both purple from being squeezed so much. The tattoo guy thought it was hilarious, as did these two other guys we met who came with us for the entertainment, and pretty much every other shopkeeper on the street who stuck their head in to see what the commotion was all about. They play all this heavy metal, hard core music in tattoo places to make them even more super rad and fully sick, but we ended up just singing the songs we sing at school all the time, as apparently that helps with the pain. Our singing was so spectacular that the guy even turned off his super-cool tattoo music!

When it came to leaving, it was about half an hour before our bus was meant to come and we were all seriously deliberating whether we should get on it because Sihanoukville was so much fun! However Fran, the German girl who was volunteering with us at ABCs, is leaving this weekend, so we decided to be good friends and come back to our old haunt and see her before she leaves. When we got off the bus back in Siem Reap it was like 6am (because we got the sleeper bus) and there was this random tuk tuk driver standing there with a sign with our names on it…that was just too much for our state of delirium to handle – he couldn’t even tell us who sent him! Everyone already seems to know us here, it’s a worry…

Anyway, back to school tomorrow, for what may actually be a full five days of school in a row with no holidays!

Posted by ljmac2 02:19 Archived in Cambodia Tagged waterfalls people parties boats beach cambodia bars sihanoukville motos booze_cruise serendipity_beach Comments (0)

(Entries 1 - 4 of 4) Page [1]