It passed over to a new day while we were going through immigration!
We're assigned to a taxi and must walk a long, long way to the taxi. One of our bags has a broken pull handle. The taxi driver takes my easy-to-roll bag, maybe just because I'm the girl, and Parth has to haul the heavier bag with a broken handle. The driver has a remote starter so the vehicle is cool by the time we get in. Ah, luxurious. But the good feelings peter out quickly ... I immediately sense the driver doesn't know where Hanumanalaya, our guesthouse, is. And, he keeps looking over his shoulder to see us while we're talking! He's driving! At least traffic is very light and he's driving slow. Parth and I whisper in back seat to strategize ... not cool to be just landed in Cambodia and we lost confidence that our driver can get us where we need to go. What to do? I tell the driver our hotel is near Sofitel so at least we can get near the vicinity. He immediately starts selling us on whether we want another guesthouse. You already pay? Yes, we already pay. He seems like a very nice guy and he wants us to hire him to take us around temples. He knows which are the good temples that were on the top of my list. But I worry because he doesn't know where our guesthouse is, he's already selling us on things, and we've been down this road before with touts disguised as drivers. I haven't done a lot of research on Cambodia and don't know what we're in for here. At least I know our guesthouse doesn't pay commission to drivers and others, and we are private tourists while our driver says most people are in tour groups here. So it's totally possible the driver may have never been asked to go to Hanumanalaya before. We pass many enormous hotels ... driver says as we pass ... $700 a night ... $1000 a night ... how much you pay a night? Uh ... well, not that. In the end we arrive at our hotel just fine and we agree to hire the driver for two days. We hope that's a good decision.
The hotel is gorgeous, better than we expected. Pristine plants, jam-packed with picturesque Asian antiques. Beautiful. It's very late, but we ask if the restaurant is still open. We enjoy dinner poolside. There is antique Burmese lacquerware in the cabinet next to us. One of the things on my shopping list. This place has character and warmth. Our room has red silk on the beds and the chairs are upholstered with red, gold and black patterned Cambodian silk.
Good morning Cambodia ...