A look forward in Cambodia

Its been a holiday here last three days in Cambodia so most places are closed. Its a bit hard to find a place to eat around the hotel so I end up riding to downtown where all the tourists are because the restaurants are all open there. I found a few little places kind of hidden away where a pint of beer costs cheaper than some of the so-called ex-pat hangouts. Not so many people go there and while dinners cost more because of location, I think the food is just better. One of the places has really good Khmer food like Amok and Lok Lak. You get both with a nice helping of steamed rice and the food portions are decent. Tonight I may ask the hotel to buy pizza again for me and get a few beers for the room and perhaps find a movie to watch. Tomorrow is gonna be busier around here and I have some stuff to do like get my laundry done one more time and take the XT2 camera to the service agents here to have them send to Singapore. I will be buying the X100F camera to take its place. In retrospect, I should have just kept the original X100F but it was acting up too because of water and its not resistant at all. I think it was on the way out as well but who would have ever thought I would only have the XT2 for a fucking month and then the shutter button would freak out? I told the dealer in Vietnam that I spent almost $2k US on a camera that lasted a month give or take.

I don’t know what I’ll do when the XT2 gets fixed besides have two cameras. I could just happily live with the X100F for the kind of photography I do. Its really a nice and compact travel camera. I may get a small bag at one of the markets tomorrow too. I think I can find a bag at the Russian or Central Market for about $10. Having two cameras just really means more weight next January when I leave Cambodia for 5 months on my swing through Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand. I may decide then what camera to really take or try to sell one or the other. The XT2 is just bigger and heavier but its water resistant but I just don’t trust it any longer. What’s to stop it from having another shutter button issue in a year or six months? I never had anything like that with the X100F.

So today I ended up downtown walking around the independence park area which is really nice for walking. Wide sidewalks and monuments, beautiful park and open areas, and then nice restaurants and bars just a walk away. I really wished to get the normal walk in today so I do not feel so grumpy and out of sorts. I really need the walk and the camera every day. I need to do about 5 to 7 miles every day of the week and take whatever photographs I want to take. Its become this habit for this old body and I feel really good when I do it and bad when I don’t.

I also started working on the second retirement report I want to do. I think by end of the weekend I will have it up on the site. This led me to thinking this morning about some other content creation. I’ve felt for a long time that I had this other longer thing somewhere inside. Perhaps a novel or a mix of fact and fiction. I don’t think it would be hard science fiction or fantasy but there is something in there I have felt that wants out. I may start outlining what it could be in Ulysses and see. I have this vision its some kind of story but have not really taken time yet to work on it. Maybe sitting on the beach some days in Sihanoukville will give me some moments to consider it. Its gonna be nice to see ocean and beaches and perhaps swim. I’ll need some swimming trunks which will be no problem there in one of the stores I would imagine.

Transitioning to Sihanoukville

The next real step is leaving Phnom Penh and taking the 4 hour bus ride to Sihanoukville. I’ll be there a month as well and will slowly explore the areas, go for walks on the beach, find the other beaches and cool places to eat and drink and hopefully work on this content which I have felt bubbling under the surface. Its my second stop in Cambodia and I’m excited to see more of this Kingdom. I’ll then head to Siem Reap to see the famous temples or Wats there and then on to the second largest city in Cambodia Battambang. Each place gets a month which is the way I like going and each thing is a bus ride to the next.

Here is a little layout of Cambodia for you to visualize what I’m doing.

You can see that I kinda skip around and don’t go in a basic straight line. It kinda keeps with the random nature of what I like doing. If something makes sense often I just don’t do it. Call it some resistance from the decades of doing project management where every task led to a milestone and had dependencies, frustrations, and irritation built in.

Then finally when done with this initial exploration of the wonderful Kingdom of Cambodia, I will return to Phnom Penh for a week and prepare to leave for 5 months. One of the big goals was the retirement visa extension of stay which I got. Without that I would have had to leave Cambodia and re-enter next week. Now I have a year here of multiple entries and exits.

Anyways at 1k level, that’s the view. Exciting times, some frustrating camera times, and mostly fun times in finding a home here to stay in with some very nice people. Since I will never stay here longer than a month, the hotel works out very well for me. I get free breakfasts, its close to services I need like laundry and food places I know now, and I also know how to get around a bit walking and taking the tuk tuks here and there.

Hopefully my next post is on my resounding success getting my camera in to the shop to get fixed and picking up the replacement. I’ll defer trying to figure out what to do with two cameras until that happens in January next year. Take care all. Hope your days are good. If you are on the road, travel slow. Its worth it!

Author: Michael Perry

I've been blogging for over 20 years and now am living in Southeast Asia. The blog is about my slow vagabonding wherever I want to go. My home base is in Cambodia but I'm rarely there.