Friday, October 19, 2012

Sihanoukville Memories

With the death this week of King Father Norodom Sihanouk, I am taking a walk down memory lane to those weekends we spend in Sihanoukville during our time in Cambodia.

This beachside province is named after the now late King, and back in the time we were living in Phnom Penh, had the best road in Cambodia leading down to it.  I went a couple of times for an escape, and took the bus each time.

As expats, sweating away in grimy Phnom Penh all week, the escape of Sihanoukville, and Serendipity Beach, was about the quiet, the beach and sun, and freedom.  To be honest, I don't recall being overly involved in the party scene down there during our visits - I remember getting up in the morning, heading to the deck chairs at the waters edge just along from our huts, and spending the day reading, eating, drinking, and having our toes painted by the women along the beach.

Each time I stayed in Sihanoukville, I stayed in these huts just on the beach.  There were only a handful of huts at that time, but a search for the same place just now finds a much bigger, more developed resort - still with some of the huts, by the looks. I am sure the whole town would be unrecognisable to us now.

The water was so warm, so much better for a non-swimmer like me than the chilly beaches at home. Languishing under umbrellas, having food and drinks come down to us from the row of beach restaurants - the only real decisions at which bar we would spend the day!

Such a great R and R treat for us, on each visit.

Vale King Norodom Sihanouk.  His was the face on the wall of every home and office I went into during my 6 months living and working in Cambodia.

This post is part of a series marking 10 years since I travelled to Cambodia to work as a volunteer.

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