This morning I jumped onto google maps to see just how far I wanted to go today. Google maps told me 2.3kms so I thought, an easy walk and off I went. I knew I’d be asked if wanted a tuk tuk, but failed to think just how annoying this could actually get. A couple of times a conversation would be started. “Oh sir, Wat Phnom is a long way away”, my response “No its only 20 minutes walk from here” which yielded “OK you go in my Tuk Tuk”. Another conversation the guy tried to convince me I needed to see everything I’ve seen again, plus also told me he could arrange to get me onto a military base to fire a rocket launcher!
Logic fails in most conservations it seems. I could see Wat Phnom where I was walking to, maybe 100 metres away and a tuk tuk driver asked again. I said “I’m going to Wat Phnom” and pointed to the actual place. He said “I take you there, very cheap”. “It should be free its only 100 metres. I can see it”, “Oh sir very far away, $2 very cheap for you”.
My only disappointment with Wat Phnom, was the fact that the troops of Macaque monkeys that steal food, were no where to be seen and it was full of tuk tuk drivers waiting to whisk me away to shoot guns, or wherever else I wanted to go, as long as I paid them money.
The afternoon, I went for a browse in the Phsar Thmei markets and the Sorya shopping mall nearby. Some interesting conversations were had there as well. “Sir, you buy hobbit movie, very new, very good”, “I already have the Hobbit, I just bought it from that shop over there”. “OK you buy hobbit for girlfriend?” which my response was “No she is blind and can’t watch movies”. “OK you buy other movies for her then?”……
Beats headphones are also sold in plague proportions here for very cheap prices. No doubt they are fake, but as one lady explained hers were real. “Sir you buy for $13, mine are real, see big box means good. Very real, not fake. OK how much you pay? $10?”, “no I’m fine just looking”. “OK sir $7” to which my response was “why not cheaper than earphones back home”.
So my last day here and will be glad to get home, its been a fun trip, my first alone in SE Asia and I can see why having a friend travel to some of these countries is comforting. Today I felt like falling to my knees and screaming “Leave me alone!”. But I made it through the day and now thankfully the next time I walk out the door I’ll need a tuk tuk to the airport. I’m sure it will be very cheap for me.