A quick shower from the hot and muggy bus ride we set to explore our new city. Our guide picked us up at the door with push bikes and we set out to see the sites with some peddle power. 1/2 km from our hotel, and just below the massive banks of the river sat a marvel. It was a one km bridge built out of only bamboo. It is constructed by the island people whom take it down during the monsoon seasons to keep it from washing away. We set out across this man made marvel that could support cars driving across it, with an aw.
The but massage from the bamboo bridge was not the most enjoyable, but the culture we would soon experience would be well worth it. As we approached the makeshift immigration point, you could tell somebody was making a few dollars on the tourist. We peddled our bikes from the bamboo road that was laid across the river sand into the dusty roads of the island. Peddling further we peddled with ease on the narrow concrete road.
As we went through the village the kids would come out to greet us as the parents stayed doing the daily chores. It was like their lives were on display, but the kids were full of joy. As we rode past they would give us high five, and we would pass them a small piece of chocolate candy (we could not give them much but kids always like candy).
We landed at this house where we tried the local fruit with one looking like a very large like but tasting like a sweet grapefruit, and another that was the size of a soccer ball with spikes like a porcupine that tasted like mellon crossed with a squash. We joined in on a game of volleyball with the island kids, and later I made friends with an 87 year old lady that spoke no English, but seemed to be speaking to me like a long lost friend. While she did not smile much, she seemed to be happy amongst her extended family, and her new long lost friend.
We left their and headed back across the bridge to catch the sun setting on the river. The views were wonderful , and the sounds of the children playing on the sand bars rang across the banks. We headed back to the hotel to wash away the dust and sweat we had collected along the way. We came back out to be met with the tuk tuk driver to take us to a home dinner with a local family.
We arrived to hear children playing and the smell of curry cooking. It was a modest home with only three rooms. You walked in to the main room that served as the family room, praying area, and sleeping area for the four children. The mats were laid out on the floor with the plates set like it was thanksgivings. The food started to come out from the back and we all started to join in as if we were at our mothers table. The food was very traditional Cambodian that did not disappoint. As the meal ended the host offered some spider wine that had a rather moonshine kick. The spider was added as they think it gives you better energy, and I am sure it is always a conversation piece. We packed back up for the hotel as the tuk tuk drivers were ready, and waved goodbye to the family that was so gracious to welcome us into their home for an evening to share culture through their eyes.