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Incredibly dusty and dirty roads. Not even a moment without being asked whether one needs a tuk-tuk or moto[-taxi] or wants to buy scarfs, postcards, drinks, shirts, drugs, opium or pirate copies of books. Blinding sunlight. Heat. Constant worry if a banknote might be accepted because of its value (not too high) or condition (not too old nor too many wrinkles or tears). The chaos is not to be underestimated if one or both of these criteria apply.. we tried that. Constant being on guard for false money that might be given for change. So much dust and emissions. Approximately 15 almost-heart-attacks per day when crossing the streets. And yet…
three days is all it tooks for us to fall in love with Cambodia. After we digested the first massive overflow of impressions over the first night the senses regenerated and opened up for the little bits and pieces in between the lines. Like the tuk-tuk driver who needs at least three friendly but definite denials but who stays absolutely nice, friendly, obliging and helpful: „Tuk-Tuk, Sir? no? why not? Tomorrow? No? Ok…where are you going? can I help you? Oh this place is in that direction“ [it then follows an accurate description of the way, emphasized with gestures]. If one responds to an offer, the excitement and joy couldn’t be greater: [on the road in front of their store] „Massage, Lady?“ „how much would it be if we both…“ (usually you don’t get any further with formulating your enquiry) „oh if you both want a massage we can give you discount!! *smile and nod*“ In the background, the girls who were sitting relaxed on plastic chairs now spring to life, running around in excitement, organizing large bowls for washing the feet, towels and prepare welcome-tea.

Relaxing – on the Phsar Toul Tom Poung (‘Russian Market ‘) in Phnom Penh

Food supplies – on the Phsar Toul Tom Poung (‘Russian Market ‘) in Phnom Penh

Food supplies – on the Phsar Toul Tom Poung (‘Russian Market ‘) in Phnom Penh

Relaxing – on the Phsar Toul Tom Poung (‘Russian Market ‘) in Phnom Penh

replacement store – on the Phsar Toul Tom Poung (‘Russian Market ‘) in Phnom Penh

replacement store – on the Phsar Toul Tom Poung (‘Russian Market ‘) in Phnom Penh


„If you never try, you will never know“. This it said on an advertisement of a massage store in Siem Reap, the town where we are staying 6 days for visiting the temples of Angkor. Since we arrived in Asia we are on a personal research mission – trying out as many different massage traditions as possible like Thai-, Khmer-, Oil-, „seeing-hands“- (from blind masseurs), foot-, head- or an unbelievable 8-hands-massage… but Cambodia surprised us with a very special massage tradition, which of course we wanted to try out: the so called Dr.Fish massage.

that tickles…

1 Kommentar auf “How is Cambodia? same same – but different.”

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