Saturday, 16 February 2013

Batman da da da da da da da da da

Batdambong is a dusty, sleepy place with a drying river running through it. There are a few nice restaurants but that is about it. It is dusty because there has been no rain since October and everyone is always setting fire to stuff after sweeping it into piles. Having said that our guesthouse was very good and included aircon, a big comfy bed, ensuite, breakfast and daily fruit bowl for $17. We used the free bikes to toodle around a bit one day and the next hired a tuk tuk to take us to ‘The Bamboo Train’. Found on a stretch of rail tracks the ‘Train’ consists of a bamboo platform, a small engine and two axels. Travellers sit on the platform and whizz along at about 30kph on the worse for wear tracks, clicking, clacking, serving and jumping along until a similar ‘train’ comes the other way. Right of way is given to the larger group. It wasn’t that comfortable, views weren’t great and it all felt a little dangerous but definitely worth doing.

The Bamboo Train
The day continued with visits to a couple of temples, driving through the dry countryside, the killing cave where Khmer Rouge fighters threw prisoners to their death and in which is now found a reclining Budha and, as a symbol of remembrance of those three or four terrible years, a small glass sided shrine filled with skulls and bones from many bodies.

Grafitti on Catcus leaves at temple

Finally we went to the Bat Cave. All that is visible is the large cave entrance on the rock face but at 6.00pm every evening hundreds of thousands of bats stream out for 45 minutes and then snake their way across the skyline before eventually dissipating and flying their separate ways. It was a truly amazing sight to see them issuing forth in such vast numbers and the swirling shapes that they formed in the evening sky.
Weird Shit:
Wedding breakfasts are celebrated to the accompaniment of music that is blared out so loud that the sound is distorted. The guests sit beneath gazebo arrangements often covering half the road where space is tight and stare at one another because talking is virtually impossible. The thinking behind this practice is so the ancestors will find the celebration and everyone from miles around know it’s a first wedding because of the noise…second marriages are much quitter and mourning events quieter still.

Funny Shit:
Rachel walked from the squat toilet to the entrance of the bus service stop with her skirt stuck in the back of her knickers

On Valentines Day we got wished 'Happy Valentines Day' by each one of the staff in a supermarket – including the manager who ran up to me especially to do so before opening the door for us to leave

Interesting Shit:
Rachel broke her tooth on a spring roll and had to go to a dentist. The place was pretty clean and she was seen straight away to get a temporary filling. The dentist spoke only a little English so we couldn’t wait to see what would happen when she said she would need Rachel to “Open wide so I can put some Semen in” …As usual Rachel duly obliged.
Sliced mango dipped in a paste of finely chopped chilli, garlic, sugar and salt

1 comment:

  1. okay clever cloggs how are you doing those effects on your pictures, black/white with a slash of colour????? neat x