06 January 2015

Last day in Cambodia

Dear Coco
After a very leisurely breakfast in our hotel,
presided over by some buddhas and this rather Irish looking leprechaun,
we ventured out onto the warm streets of Siem Reap to do some last minute sightseeing and gift-buying.
We walked up the river
past lotus-lily sellers,
and locals taking time off in the shade,
to the Royal Gardens in front of the King's residence, which he uses when he comes to Siem Reap. The gardens are a tad tatty, but at least they provide a bit of welcome greenery in the town. High up in these trees are lots of bats - known as "flying foxes" that hang upside down looking a bit like seed pods.
In front of the Raffles Grand hotel D'Angkor hotel the gardens are called the Royal Crusade for Independence Gardens as it was here in Siem Reap that King Sihanouk orchestrated the successful bid for Cambodia's independence from France in the 1950s.
We went into the hotel for a very elegant pot of Earl Grey tea - served with little macarons, and Simon had a watermelon juice served with banana chips and little rice cakes. Very civilized and beautifully air-conditioned.
The hotel reminded us of the Mount Nelson, although its not as old - having being built in the 1930s (the Nellie was build in the late 1890s).
The Alph had the camera today - and enjoyed taking photos of unusual cars,
and one of all of us reflected in a poster for the Apsara dancers we saw the other night.
We chose some fruit for lunch,
although we didn't succumb to buying one of these large Durian fruits that smell really bad but taste of custard with almonds.
We also found a fantastic looking cake shop. Olivia, eat your heart out
Then Simon returned to the hotel and the Alph and I did a spot more looking around - this is the Old Market which sells fish and other interesting stuff,
like this dragon fruit.
Some people sell from their own tuktuks or bikes - these are live, dried cockles.
Soon it was time to return to our hotel,
have a last few swims and pack up and go.
I am sure I will be able to write you one more letter before we see you, so good night Coco,
lots of love, the FL

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