Day 4: Cambodia. No Rain -- Except Bus Ride. No Big.

Coordination had gone beautifully. We were on our way to Cambodia! It was going to be a quick 24 hour side trip but worth.every.minute.

The bus ride was like any other --4.5 hours was easy. Random stops with random guys {and their guns} coming to check passports. The fields completely flooded up to the roadside {and then some} scared us a little more -- it was monsoon season after all.

Crossing the border into Cambodia was something else. It was chaotic. Straight out of the movies. People were pushing carts of coconuts passed kids digging through heaps of garbage, while hoards of people waited in never-ending lines with sweat drenched shirts from the 150% humidity.

Luckily we'd decided to get our visas before leaving which saved us a ton of time -- something we had very little of.

A tourist "guide" pretty much glued himself to us and kept reappearing at different stages of the crossing. It was annoying yet  somewhat welcomed at the same time.

At the final stage we ran into two French girls and a guy from Mobile Alabama that has driven thru Niceville -- again, small world. We are cautious travelers and realize that, unfortunately, not everyone is honest yet at the same time it's funny how quickly you make friends with people from all around the world when none of you are on your own turf. We piled into this sketchy, free bus to the actual bus station where the 5 of us had to split up in different cabs.

The next 10 minutes were the most confusing of our life trying to get a cab for cheap. Cambodia recognizes 3 different currencies, therefore 3 different exchange rates and 5 Cambodian men trying to tell us what to do. It was probably the only part of the trip that we actually felt taken advantage of. We just weren't prepared and because of that had to let other people make decisions for us. The part that bothered us the most was just the time we were wasting! We had places to go and things to see! Our advice, don't bother with riel. Half the country uses the U.S. dollar anyways.

They ended up putting us in a cab with a guy from Germany and a girl from Thailand and sped off towards Siem Reap. It was a typical fast, seatbelt-less, keep-you-on-your-toes cab ride except with way more pot holes and motorcycles with dead HOGS balanced across the back.

{i told you...}

{filling up}

{where's the party?!}

The cab stopped at a tuk tuk service {surprise, surprise} but we grabbed the first guy to say he could take us through Angkor Wat in 3.5 hours. His name was Mr. Lam, and at first he wanted to talk our ear off about the history of Cambodia, and the temples, and the people {which we would have loved on ANY other day} but after explaining we had very little time he got the point and had that tuk tuk revvin.

{i wish we got a shot with mr. lam. sweet man.}

We made our way through Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom, and Phnom Penh {also known as Tomb Raider because of the movie}. It really is a place you could spend ALL day in. The ruins are just out of this world. We crawled all over {there are less rules in Cambodia} and just took it all in.

From Kim's Lens:
{i grabbed a wrap to wear around the temples}

 {excuuuuse me!}

{jesse's obligatory shot!}

{angkor thom -- jesse kept blending in}

{finally got a shot together}

{phnom penh}

At one point we grabbed a few drinks. We realized one of them was tea so we offered it to Mr. Lam. Maybe that was a major faux pa but we'd become buds through our whirlwind tour and he was so grateful! I mean, he was practically off-roading in that tuk tuk over the muddy dirt roads. The poor guy's feet were caked after pushing through some of the hairiest parts of the trail.

From Jesse's  Lens:

 {just chattin it up. i so wish we got a picture with mr. lam!}

{angkor wat -- dream come true!!}


{angkor thom}

{i spy a jesse}

 {phnom penh}


We ended up passing the two French girls and later the Alabama guy. We waved as the tuk tuks raced passed each other like we were best friends. Small world.

We settled in to our hotel, grabbed some food, and did some laundry until the power went out...3 times.