I thought Coco might be a little templed out so we took a break from them and went to the floating village instead. It was a 45 minute tuk tuk ride out there and we both enjoyed seeing the sights and snapping pictures along the way. I realize this could easily become another crazy picture heavy post so I am going to pare it down to just a choice few. 🙂
On the boat:
Pics as we approached the floating village with floating houses, floating store, floating church, floating school, floating orphanage and even a floating basketball court!
I agreed to stop at the community market to buy some things for the orphanage since our guide said all the proceeds went back into the community. I was shocked how high the prices were though! I wasn’t going to pay $60 for a bag of rice so I settled on some bottled water and lollipops which still set me back $20. Not sure where that profit really goes…
There was fascination with Coco’s hair, of course. Many, many people commented on or touched her hair there. And now that I think about it, there were very few if any people that we came across of African descent and no one with hair like hers. I guess many folks have never seen it or certainly never gotten an opportunity to actually touch it. She was an extremely good sport about it because I know she doesn’t like people touching it, understandably.
We left the market with our water and lollipops and headed to the orphanage. I prepped Coco on what she was about to see and what an orphanage was. Ugh, I regret speaking those words with every fiber of my being. I don’t know why I felt the need tell her anything about it. I’m sure she would have just thought it was a school. Her response cut me to my core and has haunted me ever since. “Are you going to leave me there?” she asked with a concerned look on her face. I was stunned and I don’t want to share what I said to her after that but as you can imagine it was extremely upsetting. We didn’t stay long. She passed out the lollipops and we left.
Next stop was the crocodile farm and gift shop. Yep, both floating. There was a boy there trying to get us to take a picture with a snake around our necks. Um, no thank you.
We stopped to relax and have a chat with a nice Australian couple who were also doing the tour on another boat. They bought Coco her first Coke. She loved it!
Maybe a little too much. It made her extra silly and crazy! Funny girl.After the floating village I went on a quest to find some artwork. I got a lovely piece and it was nice to meet the artist. He was so talented! My new plan is to pick art where ever we travel. It’s easy to transport back home and is a lovely memento of your vacation, not to mention it supports local artists which I’m all for. Wish I could have bought ten.
When we got home we changed and got ready for the cool evening activity I was excited about for weeks: off roading at sunset on ATVs through the Cambodian countryside!! Seriously, this was an amazing find on my part and J and Coco loved it, too. We went with a company called Quad Adventure and I thought they were pretty good. We got a mini lesson on how to drive it first and a trial run (very mini- like 5 minutes) and then we got fitted with helmets, signed a form recognizing the risks and were off to see the rice paddies!
The tour was an hour which was the perfect amount of time. It wasn’t too hot and although it was dusty and a bit precarious on the uneven dirt roads at times, it was awesome to see another side of Cambodia away from the posh hotels and crowded temples. As we drove through the countryside, village children would come to the side of the road to wave to us which was totally endearing! The final stop was so gorgeous with a great expanse of green rice fields in every direction. We just loved it! I’m not doing so well with paring down the photos. My bad.
The day wasn’t over yet! This one was seriously jam-packed! We came home, showered off layers of dust and mud and went to lovely buffet dinner poolside at our hotel where we also got to enjoy a cultural show. Coco LOVED it! We had front row seats and there were some excerpts of what story each dance was telling so we shared that with her beforehand so she (we) would understand and that was all she needed. Her eyes were glued to the dancers the entire time! She especially enjoyed the love story. 🙂 They offered picture-taking opps afterwards and I really, really wanted Coco to go on stage with the dancers but she wasn’t having it. I was disappointed. Oh well. I can’t blame her; she was tired. It had been a very full day!