Monday 18th December
Miles: 93 Climbing: 1860ft
I had a fairly lazy start to the day. Knowing that today would be a rest day I stayed in bed later than normal before heading out for breakfast. After I had finished breakfast I told the owners that I would like to stay for another night but unfortunately they had just had a booking for my room. Disappointed I had a look online for other places to stay. There were a lot of places very nearby but in my logic if I was going to have to pack everything back onto my bike to move hotels then I may as well cycle 95 miles to the Mekong as I had originally planned to do.
So that’s what I did. It was a long, hot day but I was really enjoying being on the road and the progress I was making. There weren’t a lot of houses or shops in this part of Cambodia so I took the opportunity to stop for drink when I could. I passed what I had come to recognise as a sugar cane press for making sugar cane juice. I had wanted to try one for a while and this was the perfect opportunity so I stopped and asked for one. I was a bit surprised when the seller started up an engine hidden under the press to turn it and the whole process took quite a while but it was well worth the wait.
Powered by this perfect energy drink I make it to the Mekong just before sunset. I had looked online for hotels around the town on Stung Treng and there was one that caught me eye just north of town. It was quite expensive online, about 50$ but I thought I would have a look and see if I could get it cheaper by just turning up and haggling.
I hadn’t realised just how far away from town it was because by the time I got there there was no way I was cycling back into town again. The roads had also become dirt tracks and wooden bridges which I didn’t fancy navigating after dark.
I had already decided that I was going to spend the night there so when they only asked for 10$ and I managed to haggle them down to 5$ I was very happy.
My room was amazing. Just a simple wooden shack on stilts overlooking the Mekong.
There was only one person there who spoke English and he just appeared whenever he was needed. His name was Tea and his English was perfect. He introduced me to his dog, Lily, who could understand English commands because Tea only ever spoke to her in English. She was lovely and the first really affectionate dog I’ve met in Asia.