I'm sitting in a cafe in Battambang, Cambodia, reflecting on the first 9 days of my holidays. Cambodia has definitely tested me on this trip, but it has also rewarded me. Let's start at the beginning....
I jumped in the car with my wonderful partner, my luggage, and a sense of anticipation, for the one hour drive to the train station. "Have you got your money" he asked. "Yes" I replied, reaching into my bag to double check. "Have you got sunscreen, your phone, power cords, chargers?" The conversation went on in this vein for some time. "It's too late now, we're already on the way" I thought, but I appreciated his interest. As we arrived at the train station and I jumped out of the car, I said "Oh, by the way honey, I've also got my plane tickets and my passport, in case you were wondering". He had forgotten to check arguably the two most important things! Bless him.
Three hours on a train, and I finally arrived at Sydney international airport where I checked in for my flight and proceeded to effectively waste three hours before I had to board the plane for an eight hour flight to Kuala Lumpur. I have discovered I love to fly at night as the plane tends to be less full and you have more room to stretch out. I totally lucked out this time, getting a centre row of five seats all to myself! Thank you Malaysia airlines.
The next stumbling block was a six and a half hour lay over in Kuala Lumpur from 3am. Nothing was open, I had forgotten to book a room at the transit hotel, the internet was sporadic at best, and I was exhausted. From 3 to 6am, when I was finally able to get a coffee, was the longest three hours ever.
By 4am, the airport was starting to look like something from a zombie movie, with shutters down on all the shops, silent airport security people wandering around, and all the travellers, aimlessly walking or sprawled on chairs and looking half dead.
Finally, it was time to board my onward flight to Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Just less than 2 hours in the air and I had finally reached my destination. As I walked out of the airport, I was immediately hit with a wall of heat, noise, and pollution, and I loved it. Ahhhh, I breathed, I'm back in Cambodia.