Southeast Asia - Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand 2014 travel blog

Our water taxi

People here often paddle from the very front of the boat

Flooded forest which happens every rainy season

Our ship

The entire crew

Day 7 – Boarding the cruise ship Written by John

Today there was an optional trip to visit Green Gecko, an organization that takes in homeless and abused children. Lois went to visit Green Gecko, and I took a tuk-tuk to pick up our laundry and pack my suitcase. After that I enjoyed sitting in our air conditioned hotel room. After Lois got back we took a tuk-tuk into town to find a place to eat. We walked around for about 30 minutes, but tired of the heat. We finally settled on a place that was reasonable, but nothing special. Lois had a small pizza, and I had a local dish of chicken, cashews, onions and peppers. Much of the local food is loaded with cilantro which Lois dislikes, so she settles for some western dish whenever possible. The meals supplied by the tour are all local, but there are many courses, so if three if the five have cilantro, and/or hot peppers, she can still fill up on something she likes. So far my favorite dish is Cambodian fish amok. This is fish cooked in coconut milk with some green leafy vegetable.

After lunch we went back to the hotel to join the tour for a short bus ride to the harbor. There we boarded a smaller boat for a fifteen minute ride to our cruise ship, which was anchored next to a flooded forest. The lake here rises 15 – 20 feet over the rainy season which floods low lying forest. It doesn’t kill the trees, and provides great fish habitat.

The ship is very small by cruise ship standards. There are 18 passengers, including the guide, and thirteen crew members. The one life boat holds 25. Our rooms are small, but functional and air conditioned. The rest of the ship is not air conditioned, but so far while underway it has been comfortable if you don’t mind the humidity. Lois has an “Isro”. The other passengers have complimented her on her hair, so she has decided not to try and dry it after a shower, but just let nature take over. When there is better lighting I will get a photo to send to Vicki, our hairdresser.

The other people on the tour are interesting people. I was talking to Jack this morning before breakfast. He was a submarine officer for 30 years before the submarines were all converted to nuclear power. They would go out for up to 72 days at a time during which, no one was allowed to shower! That was bad enough, but to top it off, people smoked! Another guy, Stan, worked in the State Dept., and was a nuclear arms negotiator (he knows Jack Segal).

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