Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Siem Reap and the Golden Banana

There are a couple of things that make us feel comfortable about a hotel in this part of the world - the biggest one is when they explicitly forbid sex tourists. I get very freaked out by the child sex trade, especially, but the whole thing bugs me a lot. We also tend to feel comfortable when a hotel says that it's gay-friendly; we suspect that means a certain warm and open atmosphere. Friendly. So the place we're staying when we return to Phnom Penh falls in the former camp, with the explicit statement forbidding sex tourism, and the place we're staying here in Siem Reap is the latter - gay-friendly.

For a while, we thought I was the only female in the whole place. For a while, we thought gay-friendly meant gay-exclusive. The staff, at least those we've interacted with, were somewhat flamboyantly gay, and giggly. The young man who set everything up with us could hardly stop giggling, and sliding his eyes to the side. I liked him, and he made me laugh. When he showed us to our room, the art on the wall really said all we needed to know:

I LOVE IT!! I really do. It makes me silly happy.

Siem Reap is preparing to be Tourist Central; the road coming into town was lined with these gigantic, mostly pastel-painted hotels that would fit comfortably in Miami Beach but were named "Empress of Angkor" or "Princess of Angkor" or things like that. Crazy. They're giant, hundreds of rooms each.

this Buddha in the traffic circle had no arms, leading Marc to call it (of course) the Buddha de Milo

the pool in our B&B; view from standing on our balcony

all the porches have these bathtubs. what?! luckily, there's a wonderful shower inside the room.
new and old Siem Reap, all on one traffic sign set-up. Temples to the left, golf straight ahead.

KFC, anyone?!
lots and lots of these giant new hotels
Our lovely little B&B is down an unpaved alley in the old part of town, so we're going to rest a bit and then head out to visit the Old Market. Maybe later check out the Night Market. But we have a tuk-tuk arranged to pick us up at 4:45 in the morning to see sunrise at Angkor Wat, so it won't be a late night for us, no matter what.

I guess all my loved ones in the US are busy making pies and turkeys and side dishes and getting ready to spend time with other of my loved ones. Happy Thanksgiving Eve, y'all, from a 3rd floor suite of a gay-friendly B&B in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

1 comment:

  1. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving Lori ~ boy this is one Thaksgiving you will never forget. I love following your travels. Hugs to you ~ love ya a bunch. Gail


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