Friday, January 4, 2008

Tid Bits of S.E. Asia

These are just little tid bits that made me laugh or I thought were interesting but didn't really make a whole story. These thoughts finish up Asia and I will start on India as I am there now. India is wild and exotic. That will come soon.

While in Cambodia a tuk tuk driver named Maow fell in love with Susan. He waited every day, every hour outside our hotel ready to take Susan ( and Cindy and I) anywhere. We hired him faithfully,(Susan rode free I am sure of it) and actually grew a bit fond of him. One morning we hired him to take us for a forty minute tuk tuk ride from Siem Reap to a bird sanctuary where we would spend the day. We agreed on a price out there and off we went. The bird sanctuary was great; a very beautiful and interesting wetlands. When we got off the boat in the sanctuary and looked for a ride back to Siem Reap there was Maow waiting for us (Susan). We hired him back but did not negotiate a price. Upon our arrival in Siem Reap Maow asked for way more than it had cost to take us out there. "What?" we asked. "I wait for you all day" he claimed. "We didn't ask you to." we said. " But I wait all day,special for you." ( I am sure he meant Susan) A domestic quarrel ensued. Voices were raised, we were yelling at Maow and he at us. He went into theatrics about how much he was hurt and how he waited for us (Susan). All three of us were yelling different things at the same time in answer to his theatrics. Five or so other taxi drivers came over to support Maow. Soon he was yelling at them and they were yelling at us. We finally walked away having paid Moaw what we thought was fair. He was not happy about the amount and yelled after us "I not be your tuk tuk driver no more". We yelled back "fine". He yelled back "FINE!". We yelled back "FINE,FINE!". It was over. We had lost our tuk tuk driver. Susan had lost her boyfriend. That is until he showed up the next morning.

While in Siem Reap Susan, Cindy and I decided to splurge and go for a $6 one hour "powder" massage. The treatment started with a foot bath and then we were escorted into the a room where there were three beds on the floor. Three young women came in, got out the powder and instructed us to strip down to our underclothes and lie down. We did and they began our massages. Cindy's masseus began to sing; she had a wonderful voice. She stopped after just a little bit; blushing. Cindy encouraged her to sing again and after a bit she did. The other girls joined in from time to time but mostly she sang by herself. As the hour past the girl got more comfortable and eventually was singing non stop. It was magical.

In Thailand Richard, Tasha (the Alaskan couple I almost couldn't join that one fateful morning) and I rented motorbikes. We rode about one hour out of town and stopped at a catfish farm. The farm had lakes that were full of hungry catfish. Very hungry catfish. So hungry that when we sprinkled food on the top of the water the water became a writhing mass of catfish. You could hear their mouths opening and closing, they would swim out of the water and on top of each other, they were so thick you could have walked on them. It was surreal, monster movie-ish. Sort of gross. After we left there we headed to a beach another hour out and while we were there it began to rain. Absolutely pour. None of us had rain gear. We waited it out for awhile in a restaraunt but it was getting late so we started back between downpours. During one of the dashes it got really bad, to the point we could not see to ride. We stopped on the side of the road and were sitting there getting drenched when we heard a family yell to us and motion for us to come down to their "house", get out of the rain and join them for lunch. We jumped at the opportunity. We took the bikes down a muddy path and over to their "house". It was a 20 by 20 foot square three feet above the ground with a slotted floor and corragated metal for siding and roof. No furniture, no electricity, no rugs, no hot water, no stove, no cabinets. After a lunch of plain rice they brought out a very strange looking nut, some leaves and a red paste. They cut the nut into pieces and handed it to us. I took a piece and put it in my mouth and instantly my mouth was dry, void of any moisture what so ever. I puckered,they laughed and then handed me a leaf with the red paste on top. I put the leaf in my mouth and my mouth returned to near normal and a taste of licorice appeared. It was terrible. They offered it again and again until I "politely" refused by getting caught spitting it out. Chit.

More later. Then India.


Anonymous said...

Sooooo...does Sherry "still" have a boyfriend??

ems365 said...

Absolutely Beautiful!