Vietnam & Cambodia 2018 - Lesley & Neil's 25th anniversary holiday travel blog

Oudong Monastery

Can you see how thrilled they are?

Some of the loads of monks


Such fun if you’ve never really had much fun before

Cooling off after all the exertion

Well, we lost the quiz. Or as our team would say, “we was robbed”. But as the winning team infringed the rules by having too many members, we were given joint first prize of a bottle of bubbly, so our disgruntlement was gruntled again. After the quiz it all turned a bit Blackpool when we were offered the chance to join in the karaoke. ‘Not our thing’ shouted everyone in the bar. Mind you, it’s astonishing what alcohol can bring out in people. I have the video evidence of Neil and his new friend Alan from Wales doing their best Tom Jones ‘Delilah’ and may use it against him at a later opportunity. Having said that, everyone started to join in and by midnight the hardcore amongst us (including ex Concorde pilot John, 82) were all on the dance floor belting out Hey Jude and American Pie. A truly bonding experience.

Despite feeling a little delicate this morning, we made it onto the bus for the short trip to Oudong Monastery which is the largest in Cambodia and impressive indeed. We were taken to the temple for a Buddhist blessing which was beautiful and serene although Neil’s new-found bilingualism failed him and they could have been reading out the local football scores for all we knew. They finished by throwing flowers over us and invited us to have photos with the monks. I’m surprised, given Neil’s views on religion as a whole, that he didn’t spontaneously combust when we knelt behind them. It was certainly memorable though. All men in Cambodia have to do at least 2 years as a Buddhist monk and most wait until their children have flown the nest, going into the service with their wives so they can be married in the next life too. I think I’ll take my chances thanks.

We then moved on to another unpronounceable village for a ride in an oxcart back to our boat. The poor cows dragging a group of overeating westerners back in 34 degrees. We definitely preferred the motorbikes!

A leisurely afternoon on the boat watching the Cambodian countryside pass us by. We did have the opportunity to learn napkin folding and fruit carving on deck, however. Neil’s comment? “Where do I sign up for sticking pins in my eyes cos I’d rather do that?” You expect nothing less by now of course 𯙄

I have no idea of our destination tomorrow so will keep you in suspense for now.


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