I’ve been in Phnom Penh, the capitol of Cambodia, for two days now, fewer hucksters on the street than in other Asian cities. They are a less aggressive breed here too. Nevertheless, they are still around.
Phnom Phen is a lawless city, much like the Wild West. You can buy your way out of or into any situation – anything goes.
I've had a blast. I’ve eaten ostrich meat, a snake kept alive until I ordered it, stir fried with skin attached. I’ve tasted snake eggs, size of marbles. I took a big bite of a tarantula, tasted like beef jerky with a hint of fish. I imagine it would be quite good with a few bottles of beer.
I went to a shooting range where I had lots of weapon choices. If you had enough riels, you could shoot a grenade launcher, even rent a TANK for an hour. Welcome to Phnom Phen.
I visited the killing fields right afer being at the shooting range. I saw where thousands of lives were ended by the Khmer Rouge, read about them, how they died and why – made me feel sick about firing a weapon, minutes earlier. I felt irresponsible and sad.
I was offered everything you can think of on the street – weed, speed, opium, crystal meth. A big bottle of Mekong Whisky will set you back ONE dollar, which I happily bought. You can have girls delivered to your door by contacting the guesthouse owner. You can taste any animal you desire, as long as the local population can get their hands on it. They only need day’s notice.
This place is lawless.
Some crazy British guy was yelling and cursing at us for being Americans. We thought we might have to protect ourselves, but it didn't go that far. Then Chad and I went to the Russian Market where we shopped until we almost collapsed. I am now the owner of 31 new DVDs – two the same, which I failed to realize. I have to pack all this in a single backpack – and the cost! As the Scottish would say, I’m fooked. But it felt so, so good.
I don’t even have a DVD player.
You can read more of Jeffrey's journey in his blog.