A camera, a tuk tuk driver, life adventures in Siem Reap

An adventure with a camera, a bus, a tuk tuk driver, and the great hotel owners was had today. My XT2 camera was shipped from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap on a bus line. The camera shop told me the name of the bus service but little did I know there was more than one office where packages were received. Of course our first stop was the wrong one and they had no idea where my camera might be. Finally they checked in some database and found it was at the other office. So off we went in the tuk tuk again. It was a few kilometers from the first one. Once there everything was done by my cell phone number so after showing the number to the package person, he produced a little box with my phone number on it and my tuk tuk driver took me back to the hotel. The driver only wanted $4 for the entire thing but of course I gave him more money. Without him, I would not have figured out what to do and when I did, it would have taken twice as long. He just came into the shop and talked with the first office manager who only shook his head but the tuk tuk driver would not let it go. Finally they confirmed we had to go to the other office. So off we went. There I was able to get the camera and then return to the hotel.

Another amazing Cambodian life adventure completed! Usually everything all works itself out but the methods to get there are different. It helps to find someone like the wife of the hotel owner who speaks very good English to help navigate the stops with the tuk tuk driver. But the hero of the day was the amazing tuk tuk driver and he walked into each shop with me, talked with the bus company people, and ensured I was able to get things done.

The camera made an amazing journey on its own I figure. It went from Phnom Penh to Singapore where the Fuji center there fixed it. I believe the camera owner may have picked it up when he went back to Singapore and hand carried it back to Phnom Penh. Then it was boxed up and put on a bus and sent to me here in Siem Reap. It cost me $5.00 to have it shipped here on the bus. Now I have the camera back and the shutter button feels great! I think they replaced the whole top housing part of the camera in Singapore.

This was thanks to FujiFilm US who saw my post on twitter and organized it to be fixed in Singapore which was not in the warranty. It should have gone back to Vietnam and the service center there but I declined that. I wanted it fixed the way I wanted to do it and the camera shop in Phnom Penh was there for me. Those guys are photo warriors! I’m glad to have that association when I return every so often.

Tomorrow is another amazing adventure! I bought a set of tours that begins tomorrow at 830 and will go for two more days through the hotel with tuk tuk rides to the different historic parks. I am so excited to go! I have wanted to visit for a long time and tomorrow is the first of three. I get to shoot the temples with the XT2 camera which makes me very happy!

Then tonight after getting the camera taken care of I had decided to have a burger but the place is closed until next week so I had a bowl of this delicious Angkor stew with some great spices and chicken in it served over rice and with two cold draft beers. Really good! And it all cost $4. Made a great end to the day and now I can sit and relax in the hotel room and dream about temple complexes and archeology and history and also having my XT2 toy back.

Shopping and Walking and Living…

I also have been able to replace all of the things I wished to here in Cambodia. I got new t shirts, socks and two pair of comfortable sandals which I had thought I would not find but after searching the old market more carefully there were at least 5 stalls with shoes. Socks were interesting. While the mall had shoes, they had no socks. I found this little clothing store down from my hotel and paid $1 a pair for socks. I still cannot find shoelaces. Strange. I keep on thinking there is somewhere that has them but still have not met with success.

I also went for a nice walk today and just took aimless photos of just about everything I saw. In other words, what I usually do. I stopped at this Cafe Amazon and met the entire staff there. All very nice young Khmer people who wanted to know where I was from, whether I liked Cambodia, and they were quite excited to hear I lived sorta kinda in Cambodia. I really like the young people here. Very friendly, lots of smiles.

Living here in Siem Reap for a longer time is not really difficult. You find the places that will do laundry, where you can buy essentials like hair shampoo, bar soap and toothpaste, where the latte stand is. Most of all what is the best Cambodian market in town. The markets are social hubs too and you can take care of lots of errand type stuff at one. I visit the old market just about every day and its fair to say I find something new most days by carefully wandering around with an iced coffee.

Anyways, that’s a wrap on an interesting yet fun day in Siem Reap. Thanks to the hotel and the tuk tuk driver and just the kindness of the people here it all worked out pretty well for me.