Rest Day in Kratie - Unchained Melody - CycleBlaze

December 13, 2023

Rest Day in Kratie

Awnings
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Scott AndersonHow could this ever hope to compete with Krud?
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2 months ago
Andrea BrownTo Scott AndersonBoy, it’s not for lack of advertising. Their signs are everywhere.
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2 months ago
Bruce LellmanTo Scott AndersonI have never seen so many signs for this beer. I mean, it's really unbelievable. You can't go a quarter mile without seeing several.
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2 months ago

Rest Day in Kratie

The air conditioner in our room here in Kratie has the condensate line running across the ceiling into a hole in the bathroom wall and down into a large plastic container wedged under and behind the toilet.  When we went to bed the first night I heard rhythmic dripping sounds much like that of a ticking clock except amplified by the plastic container.  I was so tired I went to sleep.  Andrea never heard it at all.  When we awoke the dripping sounds were gone but the bathroom floor was wet because the plastic container was overflowing.  The drain in the bathroom floor, which the sink drains across the floor and into, is on the opposite corner of the bathroom from the plastic container under the toilet.  I couldn't move the container to empty it.  I didn't try very hard because if it was empty then the amplified dripping sounds would reappear and drive me nuts.  So, wet floor it was for the two days we stayed there.  Do you want to know more about our $13 room?  Okay.

There are square decorative blocks high in the wall (part of the wall) on three sides.  They have a design and are mostly open to let air and light through.  But the room is air conditioned so why would you want so much cold air escaping to the outside?  Fortunately the decorative blocks have screening attached to them to keep out mosquitoes of which we still have not seen any.  OK, so there is a room next door to our room and guess what!, those decorative, open-type, square blocks are across the entire wall (up high) that separates the next room from ours!  If that person(s) make any noise we can hear perfectly and vice versa.  If they have lights on our room is lit up too!  Who designed this place?  Mr. Airflow?

There is a huge balcony that bakes in the afternoon sun to the point that we can scrub our Keens and put them out there and they will be bone dry in a matter of an hour. So, the room has something going for it.  I like the balcony a lot but I can't be out on it except for a few minutes at sunrise.  If I were on it anytime the rest of the day I would be bone dry in a matter of minutes.  

We decided to stay two nights in this room before we knew about all of its amenities.  The owner took our money and we never saw him or any other employee again.  No housekeeping going on here but I know where the water bottles and towels are kept so we are fine.  Every room throughout Asia gets two water bottles provided per day.  I provided myself with two today.  We had the feeling all along that we wouldn't get a housekeeper to come into our room ever so we left our trash can outside in the boiling sun because it had a thousand tiny banana peels and a papaya carcass in it.  It was right where we put it when we came back in the afternoon but miraculously it was emptied very late in the day. 

As far as soap goes there has been a radical shift in soap allocation in hotel rooms as far as we have seen.  There is no soap in the room or if there is, it's a microscopic thin little wafer which doesn't lather and disintegrates after a certain number of minutes.  I don't know what happened with hotel soap but it's across the board.  It seems that at the last big hotel owners convention something big was decided on soap.  It's been rough and I would have bought a big bar in the market but I keep thinking something has to give on this soap issue but so far it's consistent - not enough soap.  They want us dirty.

There are other things wrong with our room but there are usually lots of things wrong with the rooms we get.  Overall, they have been great but that's only my opinion.  It's Asia and if my feet get wet every time I go into the bathroom I find it kind of refreshing.  I don't mind.  We can live two nights with some guy next door who makes no noise at all and his light coming through the decorative wall blocks don't mind me because I am too tired to be bothered by it.  The best part is that the building is a beautiful yellow.  The strangest thing in the room is a tiny little vanity of sorts.  It's got a couple drawers and shelves but it is the size for a child's playhouse.  It's of no more use than to hold a papaya and a bunch of miniature bananas but after I put them there I thought the thing was going to collapse under the weight.  It's no more than two feet tall!  What's the deal with that?!  It's so strange that it weirds me out. That's the thing I can't live with so we are not staying here for another rest day. 

Today we just walked around town, went to the market for peanuts and ate one more time at one of the best restaurants I've ever eaten at in Asia.  We also saw more khao lam on the main street across from the promenade along the Mekong.  There has been a resurgence of interest in khao lam it seems.  We never used to see it outside of northern Thailand.  Oh, once in a blue moon we would see some in some obscure place but only a few pieces.  This is major.  There is stand after stand here in Kratie.  That's so interesting.  It's a very old school thing and I would have thought it would have died out.  It's good to see its comeback.

Here are a bunch of photos of Kratie, Cambodia

The central market in Kratie is surrounded by fruit and vegetable sellers.
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On the periphery of the central market.
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I would like to take this entire basket home with me.
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Kristen ArnimYou could definitely find space for that in your kitchen.
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2 months ago
Outside the central market.
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Central market, Kratie.
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Central market, Kratie.
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This is where I should have bought a bar of soap. Central market, Kratie.
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Central market, Kratie.
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Chid heaven. Central market, Kratie.
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In one section of the central market there is a great eating area.
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In another section of the central market there are guys making jewelry.
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The man at the Silver Dolphin Guesthouse arranging a vehicle for us.
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I didn't know pizza was a flavor.
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Cambodian women wear such interesting hats.
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John SolemWinogrand-like picture 👍🏻
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2 months ago
Some of the shampoo our hotel rooms have had. No soap though.
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Mark LellmanHave you used RAMUS yet? Certainly it was just for Boot, and the sunsilk for Andrea. I wonder if Ramus was even shampoo? I'd be afraid to use it, with my growing lackage of hair. It might just be the explosive final was, when the remainder decides enough is enough.
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1 month ago
Food everywhere in Kratie.
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An incredibly corrupt government does have its advantages for us. Wing is the money exchange in Cambodia. Instead of taking 45 minutes to change a $100 bill in Vietnam that required filling out five redundant sheets of information and signatures everywhere as well as many copies of my passport, I go to Wing, give them cash and they give me Cambodian Riel. They don't care about my passport or signatures or paperwork. It's just a cash exchange as it should be.
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If I was rich I would have bought one of these and shipped it to Gregory for his winning jingle.
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Ron SuchanekI wonder if they have Krud Lite? Did they used to have a Krud Man mascot back in the early 70s? Am I going to have to make you a Krud tee shirt now?
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2 months ago
Andrea BrownTo Ron SuchanekYea to the shirt. And one for yourself.
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2 months ago
Bruce LellmanTo Ron SuchanekYou certainly don't have to but it would be cool. Gregory should be in line for one too.
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2 months ago
Mark LellmanI bet there are Krud tee shirts to be had in Cambodia. A marketing opportunity like that can't be overlooked. But, Quality or Power? Hard to decide. Maybe one of each.
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1 month ago
Khao lam goes upscale! I've never ever seen a banner advertising khao lam.
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A khao lam delivery from out in the countryside no doubt.
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Just downstream from Kratie there is a new bridge being constructed.
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Fancy decorative things to buy and present to the temple as a cool offering. They could be for specific ceremonies of which I am unaware.
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One of the owners of Three Street Eatery, a great restaurant for Khmer foods in particular. I never got his name, unfortunately but he loves cats, fosters them and then finds homes for them.
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Three Street Eatery, Kratie, Cambodia
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This is #18, Char K'Dau. Outstanding.
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We had #17, #18 & #19. All were incredible. If we had stayed in Kratie more days I would have liked to have tried nearly everything at Three Street Eatery.
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Mark LellmanYou really went overboard at Three.
Good for you. Finding a restaurant where you like everything that you have tried there is a great memory to have. It creates a longing for a long time.
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1 month ago
#21 was one of the tastiest dishes I've ever eaten in Asia. Three Street Eatery, Kratie.
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Our place, Heang Kanha Guest House
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The rental bike fleet at Heang Kanha Guest House. I'm so glad we have our own bikes!
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The Mekong River in the distance from our balcony.
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Bruce LellmanTo John SolemThere again it looks like I used a flash but, nope. I don't use a flash at all. Ever. I wouldn't even know how since I only use an iPhone.
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2 months ago
Another great sunset over the Mekong River at Kratie, Cambodia.
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lovebruce

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Comment on this entry Comment 7
Jen RahnI think you went into this trip with an expectation of being able to replenish your supply of little soaps. (Right?)

So, it has to be stressful and discombobulating when there's not even enough available to meet your present moment hygiene needs.

I would love to have been a fly on the wall at the hotel owners' convention when they decided to dial down the production of little soaps.

I was so looking forward to some little soap replenishment statistics .. perhaps a flavor of the disappointment you are experiencing.
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2 months ago
Bruce LellmanTo Jen RahnYes, it's quite a disappointment. I was considering cutting my trip short and letting Andrea continue without me. She isn't nearly as disappointed about the situation. She says she's using shampoo in lieu of soap. So far I've not been able to go there. I mean, operas are made to soap. I've never heard of a shampoo opera.
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2 months ago
Gregory GarceauI'm really enjoying this journal. I'm not sure if it's Southeast Asia itself, or both of your fun and descriptive writing styles, but I find myself wanting to go there. I could literally make a couple of comments on every page, but I'm trying not to make a pest of myself.

I'd definitely appreciate it if you were to go back and get that Krud umbrella for me. I realize it would be expensive to purchase and ship to Minnesota, but maybe you could go to a Cambodian bank and take out a loan. By the way, I came up with a slogan to go with the jingle. "Krud: The Court Jester of beers!"
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2 months ago
Jen RahnTo Bruce LellmanI just did a Google search on "shampoo opera" and one of the search results was a link for a company called 'The Soap Opera Company'.

One of their products is ... are you ready for this?

A bar of shampoo!!!

What is this world coming to?!
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2 months ago
Andrea BrownTo Jen RahnThis travesty cannot stand!
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2 months ago
Andrea BrownTo Gregory GarceauYou can make all the comments you want, Gregory, we love the engagement even though we sometimes don’t have the time to respond. We love SE Asia. There is the whole gamut of sublime beauty to infuriating annoyance every day so you have to keep yourself on an even keel and accepting attitude. My main problem has been the heat and humidity, but as a Minnesotan you may have more tolerance than I do. I grew up in the Rockies, we don’t do humidity. At all. These countries each have a distinct flavor, the instant you cross the border, it’s remarkable. So our fascination continues and we keep coming back.
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2 months ago
Bruce LellmanTo Gregory GarceauGregory,
Go ahead, make a pest of yourself! Always fun to see what you have to say.

Sorry, but we are NOT going back for that umbrella for you! If only I had thought of getting a micro loan in Cambodia. What's wrong with me?
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2 months ago