Riding around Phnom Penh: 31st of January- 1st of February

With our two new brilliant monsters (…) we headed straight away to the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, or S-21, the school that was turned into a prison during the Khmer Rouge regime. The visit was pretty intense, but we really wanted to understand something about the history of the country, especially because the next day we would have gone to the Killing Fields. Four buildings to think and reflect on it.

Ok, the two motorbikes were not exactly monsters. Well, Fotzetta was. The other not. On the way back to the hostel it needed its first (but not last) repair, that went on till the next morning, when we had to go back to garage and we assisted some terrific scenes of Cambodian people shouting at each other (we don’t know the reason) and a crazy woman who punched a man. It was a mess, we were about to resell the bikes, really frustrated as one of them was already broken, but in the end we really wanted to try the experience, and A. was good in convincing Floh to give it a chance. And it was the best choice we could have made.

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In the afternoon we went to the Killing Fields, and that was another moving experience. Everything was so silent, and there is just you, with your earphones on, listening to the entire story of an horrible moment in Cambodia’s history. And still it seems so unreal, the peace all over the place, the still air, nobody dares to speak there. That was the moment when I felt  real and concrete the massacre in Cambodia. I felt so unaware while I was listening to the stories, so far from what had happened and I was suddenly there, stepping on that same ground, looking at the same trees. The holiday gave me so much to think about. Not only, it  gave me so much of everything, that’s all. Like every travel, every place gives something to bring back inside.

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Back to happier things, another night of fun was waiting for us. Floh, Fotzetta and I reached the hostel way before the others (who got lost somewhere in the city). While deciding to drink an innocent coke in the place in front of the hostel (I say “place” because its nature was not really clear, it was a laundry place during the day, but a bar/whatever at night) we were caught by some locals and invited to drink with them. We couldn’t say no. “My country, my beer!” was the slogan of the night (and the slogan of the Angkor beers we had!). It was hilarious, with a lot of effort in communication (their English was sooo not enough!). Later, with A. and An. we met an amazing couple of Canadians, and went through the night chatting and drinking.

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